Blog Post

Starbucks adds AT&T WiFi, works deal to keep T-Mobile too

StarbuckslogoNope, Starbucks isn’t dumping T-Mobile out with the old coffee grinds. According to an AT&T press release, Starbucks is adding AT&T wireless service to their java locations, but a separate Starbucks release indicates that T-Mobile customers won’t be left in the cold.For AT&T folks, here’s the deal:

  • Every Starbucks Card member gets two free hours of WiFi per day.
  • AT&T Broadband and U-Verse customers get unlimited WiFi at Starbucks.
  • Two hours of WiFi costs $3.99 a session
  • Unlimited WiFi is $19.99 a month through AT&T

Good to see T-Mobile customers not getting the shaft here and the two hour plan sounds like a decent deal. It’s just about the right amount of time it takes me to drink a Venti and it actually costs less!Interesting how everyone is saying that T-Mobile service got dumped. Did nobody else check the Starbucks press center? ;)

13 Responses to “Starbucks adds AT&T WiFi, works deal to keep T-Mobile too”

  1. I have blackberry 8320 with t-mobile , when i try to use wifi AT&T ,i get to starbucks login page, but wont let me to put user and password its like screen is jam. Is any thing wrong im doing or i cant use it with att wifi

  2. I have the Starbucks VISA (no cap to the points you earn). One of the neat things about it is if I go to Target where they ask you to stick your card into their reader (which sucks it in) – I get the option of using my Starbucks or Visa.

    I’ve never tried answering “Starbucks” and wonder if my rewards could be spent in Target just as easily as Starbucks.

    The press release is pretty vague on how people will use the card to access the WIFI. I’m pretty sure it must refer to the disposable – otherwise the only number on my Starbucks VISA is my VISA account number itself – and I don’t see people using that.

    Will wait to see how this all rolls out. I have a Blackberry 8320 on [email protected] via T-Mobile and every time I walk into Starbucks it automatically goes to WIFI (UMA) coverage and all my calls are free. I’d be disappointed if Starbucks didn’t continue providing coverage for that service.

    Come to think of it — I wonder if T-Mobile had to enter into some agreement to keep all their [email protected] customers from breaking their contracts? (Useage of the service in Starbucks is pretty heaviy hyped)

  3. I thought the same thing as Ben L., as to what they mean by Starbucks card. If it means the typical Starbucks reloadable card, then that is great. And to answer Wayne’s questions, there really is no set minimum on a Starbucks card. I’ve started to use one recently, since Starbucks occasionally will add value to the card for being a loyal customer.

  4. Starbucks Card…..?

    Seems like everyone thinks this is referring to their “gift” cards, are we certain this isn’t referring to their Duetto Visa Cards (which are normal credit cards, not gift type cards)? Just thought of this as I read the story.

  5. T-Mobile will no longer be the WiFi provider for Starbucks. To keep the T-Mobile / Starbucks customers happy, they worked a deal for T-Mobile Hotspot plans to continue working in Starbucks, even though the service will now be provided by AT&T. According to an e-mail from Starbucks to Om Malik, T-Mobile customers will continue to have WiFi access at Starbucks for “years to come”.

  6. I just re-read the Starbucks second press release you linked. I’m not getting the warm fuzzies on the T-Mobile side of things.

    First, the release headline is:

    “Agreement signals a transition to AT&T Wi-Fi service at Starbucks beginning in spring 2008”

    …and in the release they mention that T-Mobile “HotSpot customers will be able to continue to access Wi-Fi services at no additional cost, through an agreement between AT&T and T-Mobile”

    So T-Mobile is in fact “getting tossed” — or why would they need an “agreement”?

    I can’t help but wonder how long that will last? Especially if at some point the ability to connect via WIFI at any Starbucks becomes a marketing tool for AT&T to sell wifi equipped cell phones with — especially the iphone.

  7. Hey Hey — you guys all missed one BIG thing that I think is a potential profit maker for Starbucks. And it could also pose as a future “advertising supported” type revenue model for retailers — at least in the WIFI area.


    PS – Hint – you need to use a Starbucks Card to get your free 2 hours. And while I’m not sure what the minimum denomination is — don’t you think a lot of those cards will go unused or get lost….

    What do you think – am I crazy?

  8. Hey Kevin,

    I posted this also on WWD comments, but I never stated T-mobile users were left out in the cold, merely that AT&T has been selected by Starbucks as the wi-fi service provider.

    However your point does need to be pointed out and I updated the post to avoid any confusion.