06 February 2016

Starbucks goes contactless in the UK

17 June 2013  |  10244 views  |  4 Visa contactless payment 2

Coffee chain Starbucks has become the latest major UK high street player to complete a large-scale roll out of contactless payments terminals.

Working with Barclaycard Global Payment Acceptance and Visa Europe, the Seattle-based caffeine Goliath has introduced contactless technology to over 550 company-owned stores in the UK, joining retailers such as Marks and Spencer, Co-Op and Boots.

The contactless push is the latest in a series of moves by Starbucks to squeeze out cash. The firm's mobile app has proven a huge success while last year it began rolling out of the Square mobile payment application at 7000 US stores.

Ian Cranna, VP, marketing, Starbucks UK, says: "With only around 1 in 3 of our customers now paying with cash, we recognise the importance and benefits of embracing new payment technologies at Starbucks. We are now able to provide our customers with the quickest and most convenient ways to pay, to speed up service and cut queue times."

Comments: (4)

Ketharaman Swaminathan - GTM360 Marketing Solutions - Pune | 18 June, 2013, 16:36

By the standards of mobile wallets, Starbucks' is no doubt a huge hit in the USA. But, unless my calculation (ow.ly/lNKVk) misses something, only 1 out of 25 Starbucks customers uses its mobile app to make payments. Does that make it a "huge success"?

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John Candido - Black Cabs - Melbourne | 19 June, 2013, 04:37

Contacless payments are not ony executed by a mobile device, but by credit cards and debit cards, such as Mastercard, Visa and American Express. Amercian Express is not known to have NFC chips in their many charge or co-branded cards, but they do. It is called 'ExpressPay'.

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Ketharaman Swaminathan - GTM360 Marketing Solutions - Pune | 19 June, 2013, 08:13

@JohnC: TY for your comment. I'm aware of plastic contactless cards and have used them myself at Starbucks and elsewhere. But my comment pertained to the following line in the article: "The firm's mobile app has proven a huge success...". As you can see, it specifically references the mobile app, not contactless cards.

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Darron Gibbard - Visa Europe - London | 19 June, 2013, 14:02

There are two approaches for mobile devices, an application calling the NFC functionality and yes you are correct there is a limited number of devices with the app (Samsung S 4), and also Barclaycard have the Paywave stick on contactless card payment method.

Details on the S4 method is here:


Paywave technology:



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