Summary:

Starbucks continues to show how a brick-and-mortar retailer can offer the convenience of mobile payments. With its updated Android app, the company adds PayPal support and a widget for card balance information and store locations. The app is now supported in the U.K. and Canada.

starbucks-widget

Starbucks continues to show how a brick-and-mortar retailer can offer customers the ease and convenience of mobile payments. On Wednesday, the company updated its Starbucks mobile app for Android with new features, including PayPal support for card reloads, while also expanding support for the app in both Canada and the U.K. Starbucks now accepts mobile payments at 14,000 locations worldwide as a result.

Interestingly, in an app economy that generally favors iOS devices over those that run Android, the support for Canada and the U.K. are specifically for Google Android devices. Here’s a rundown of what you’ll see in the updated Android version, found in the Google Play store:

  • PayPal support. In the U.S. and Canada (sorry U.K.!) Starbucks cards can be reloaded through a PayPal account. Credit card reloads are still an option for those who don’t use PayPal.
  • My Starbucks Rewards. This feature is enhanced with a full history of earned rewards and transactions that count towards future rewards.
  • Starbucks Widget. A handy looking widget is included that provides one look or one tap access to pay for drinks, current balance, number of reward stars and a store locator.
  • Improved security. Users can assign a PIN to their Starbucks app, providing another level of security.

It’s not surprising that Android device users are getting PayPal support as Starbucks for iOS added that feature in version 2.2.1 this past April. But it’s interesting that the application’s geographic expansion is Android first.

That may signal Starbucks’ acceptance that while iOS is the money-making platform in general, Android’s market share counts more from the company’s point of view: Why not target your bigger audience with new features and a greater number of store locations for easy mobile payments?

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