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Starbucks visitors to sip iTunes downloads?

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
The head of the American coffee monolith hinted this week that socialites at his chain's many cafes may soon be topping up their digital music players as well as their drinking cups.

At a talk held jointly by Bloomberg and the Levin Institute, Starbucks' chair Howard Schultz reckoned that the beverage giant would soon begin testing and ultimately deploying a system that would let its customers add music to their jukeboxes. The change would likely occur "over the next six to eighteen months," Schultz said, but was most likely to happen within a year.

"Within 12 months, probably, you're going to be able to walk into a Starbucks and digitally be able to fill up your MP3 player with music," he said at the conference.

He declined to elaborate on potential partners or how the system would work, leaving ample room for speculation.

Apple may be a prime candidate for the service thanks to its existing involvement with Starbucks. Eyebrows were raised only last year when the coffee house scrapped an experimental CD service it had been testing in its shops, promptly replacing it with a special Hear Music section at the iTunes Store. No other music player or online store provider has otherwise been involved with Starbucks, leaving Apple its strongest partner.

Even with this apparent certainty, questions remain about the delivery method. Of the music players in most US stores, only one -- Microsoft's Zune -- currently supports the Wi-Fi connection that would likely be needed to transfer songs directly to the player. And in its existing form, the Zune can only temporarily share songs with its own kind rather than buy or download songs from a central location.

Other alternatives may be just as doubtful. SanDisk's new Sansa Connect player would initially appear to be an ideal match with the ability to buy songs through Wi-Fi. However, the option is limited to specific stores and would almost certainly exclude both iTunes or its Starbucks equal.

AppleInsider is watching the story closely and will report on new developments in hardware and online stores that reveal Starbucks' eventual plans.
post #2 of 27
That reminds me I really need a cup of The Beatles.


"The head of the American coffee monolith.."
Seriously?
Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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post #3 of 27
I think a kiosk purchase system is overdue. If Apple doesn't want to go along with it, then some other company will be the innovator, although probably without DRM, so it might be just the independents that will do it. Pair up with eMusic and you might have a pretty good system. Without DRM, it could hypothetically serve any portable media player, just offer a USB jack and maybe loaner cables. With a little bit of software, some configuration profiles, file storage methods and file transfer methods for common player types, I think it is doable. You'd need to include a program to transfer the files off an iPod as it's really one of the more complex file management system that I'm aware of, with obfuscation and such.
post #4 of 27
http://pogue.blogs.nytimes.com/2007/...ista-surf-free

Quote:
Originally Posted by David Pogue

Buy Vista, Surf Free

Any laptop running Windows Vista can hop onto any T-Mobile wireless hot spot in North America for free, any time between Jan. 26 and April 30. That includes Starbucks, Borders bookstores, Kinko’s shops, and tons of hotels and airports.

Seeing that I'm thinking MS are behind this story too and it'll be Zune only. Therefore a costly flop.
post #5 of 27
order 4000 latte's from Starbucks. Aren't the iPhones shpping in 6 months. Isn't there a secret killer app on the iPhone. Didn't Steve say there were top secret things in Leopard. Won't the whole iPod line be updated in the next 6 to 18 months.

post #6 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by midlomuncher View Post

order 4000 latte's from Starbucks. Aren't the iPhones shpping in 6 months. Isn't there a secret killer app on the iPhone. Didn't Steve say there were top secret things in Leopard. Won't the whole iPod line be updated in the next 6 to 18 months.


Did an elephant just fall in Africa? Why is my leg sore? A lot of unanswered questions.
Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of the rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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post #7 of 27
Personally, I'd rather buy a couple of TV shows or four songs on iTunes than spend $3.99 on a horrible cup of coffee. But I realize that is a matter of taste.

But, put another way, I could do neither, save $120 a month, or $1440 a year, which when annually invested at 10% per for the the next 18 years works out to about $72.5K (say you have a newborn today -- that's a nice chunk of change for his/her college).

Starbucks is the modern substitute (from a financial standpoint) for that daily pack of cigarettes (remember those?)!
post #8 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

I think a kiosk purchase system is overdue. If Apple doesn't want to go along with it, then some other company will be the innovator, although probably without DRM, so it might be just the independents that will do it. Pair up with eMusic and you might have a pretty good system. Without DRM, it could hypothetically serve any portable media player, just offer a USB jack and maybe loaner cables.

The iPod name originally referred to a kiosk, didn't it? It's all comin' back on 'em.

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post #9 of 27
good. I remember some of starbucks have CD ripper for buying songs on CD. you can choose any songs up to 13-14. then the macine copy those songs onto CD. now, you can just download songs from starbucks section in itunes. or go to there for using wifi or use machine which you can download songs. I've seen this kind of machine in Seattle.
Life is good to enjoy....
and Mac makes me more please....
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Life is good to enjoy....
and Mac makes me more please....
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post #10 of 27
Like Starbucks or not, lots of persons buy lots of drinks there. Like iPod or not, lots of persons own them. Both Apple and Starbucks share the same sense of cool and hipness. This synergy seems like a no-brainer. If Steve's mention of The Beatles coincides with strong rumors that Apple Corps will finally bury the hatchet and embrace iTunes, then his "prank call" hints at some kind of growing relationship with Starbucks. We already know Starbucks has its own corner in iTunes.

We know Wi-Fi is in the iPhone. One could assume Wi-Fi might be a feature in the next batch of iPods. While I doubt they'll have the (ultimately impotent) sharing feature of Zunes, these new iPods and iPhones might pave the way for a more ubiquitous iTunes Store, made possible by the ubiquitious Starbucks.
post #11 of 27
Excellent idea, a touchscreen with an iPod Dock connector at certain tables would be really nice. Perhaps you could buy a $5 or $10 song card you swipe in, song goes on the iPod, go home, sync up your iPod and song transfer's into your library.
post #12 of 27
This kind of thing isn't incredibly useful for simply buying songs in coffee shops. But it's a starting point that seems really interesting.

-Movies on a slow connection: Pick a movie to watch, your net connection is too slow, so download it in Starbucks (or Apple or Cingular Stores)
-iPod is your iTunes: Plug in your iPod (wired or wirelessly) to any iTunes (friends, starbucks, whatever) and have full managment of the iPod as if you're using your own home iTunes. Create new playlists, download podcast updates automatically, purchase "store special" songs - and sync back to your iTunes when you get home.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

You'd need to include a program to transfer the files off an iPod as it's really one of the more complex file management system that I'm aware of, with obfuscation and such.

That parts already done. You can transfer songs you've purchased off your iPod onto an authorised machine.

Lets hope the new iPods have Bluetooth. Afterall - a widescreen iPod with bluetooth allows the use of a web-browser etc when near a computer (or via your old mobile phone). Maybe it needs wifi.
post #13 of 27
I'd say it's an almost certainty that this story in fact refers to M$ and the Zune Marketplace. Their 'Welcome to the social' ties in very well with this, and they can pay Starbucks the necessary B$ to get their shit in every nasty coffee bar.
post #14 of 27
Does anyone remember Steve Jobs in the Keynote about the iPhone, calling Startbucks, and looking up Starbucks in the Google maps?

There must be some reason for it. Could this be it?
post #15 of 27
Yea, this system was designed for the iPhone I'm sure. WiFi capability and the service to begin some time in the next 12 months? The Zune just got dusted. I think the iPhone will be really cool, but I'm gonna hold off until the second gen. I want a 40 to 80 gig iPhone because I'm sure I will be more interested in the iPod capability (video) than the phone itself. I really, really hope that the iPhone will be made open to 3rd party apps for greater functionality like palm and windows devices currently are. That is what will make the iPhone a true champ. I want to be able to use epocrates and 5MCC on the iPhone so I wont need two devices.
post #16 of 27
Folks,

More info on this here:

http://silveradosys.blogspot.com

tl
post #17 of 27
An Apple/Starbucks merger is a bit far-fetched, as each company is far too invested in its own brand, but I think a very strong alliance is likely.
post #18 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by torster View Post

Folks,

More info on this here:

http://silveradosys.blogspot.com

tl

I'm hesitant to dignify that blog entry by even discussing it, but Apple merging with Starbucks doesn't make a whole lot of sense.

First, the blog doesn't cite any source -- named or otherwise.

Second, the blog has only been around for a month.

Third, Starbucks is a $35 billion company. Why would Apple make such a large (and permanent) investment when it could achieve the same result by strategic alliance? (This isn't exactly FedEx/Kinko's, which was a much smaller acquisition by a much larger company.)

Some dude made this "rumor" up in his living room.
post #19 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ireland View Post

Did an elephant just fall in Africa? Why is my leg sore? A lot of unanswered questions.

Please let me know if you find out the answers.
post #20 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Squirrel_Monkey View Post

Like Starbucks or not, lots of persons buy lots of drinks there. Like iPod or not, lots of persons own them. Both Apple and Starbucks share the same sense of cool and hipness. This synergy seems like a no-brainer.

Popularity doesn't equate to "cool and hipness".

Apple's (at least for me) always represented kind of a mainstream alternative. It's disappointing that it's been allying itself with all these huge corporations which, all due credit to them and their success, provide sub-quality product, customer service, an artificial and manufactured "culture", and a whole lot of bureaucracy. Intel, Cingular, now Starbucks.

And I do understand why Apple went with these choices. Intel has a better roadmap than AMD or IBM. Cingular has the widest network with the most subscribers in the US. Starbucks has the greatest distribution of stores. I would just have been a lot happier had Apple gone with AMD, T-Mobile, and Peets/other regional coffeeshops (I'm in San Francisco. Peets is our big local chain).
post #21 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by RexTraverse View Post

Popularity doesn't equate to "cool and hipness".

Apple's (at least for me) always represented kind of a mainstream alternative. It's disappointing that it's been allying itself with all these huge corporations which, all due credit to them and their success, provide sub-quality product, customer service, an artificial and manufactured "culture", and a whole lot of bureaucracy. Intel, Cingular, now Starbucks.

And I do understand why Apple went with these choices. Intel has a better roadmap than AMD or IBM. Cingular has the widest network with the most subscribers in the US. Starbucks has the greatest distribution of stores. I would just have been a lot happier had Apple gone with AMD, T-Mobile, and Peets/other regional coffeeshops (I'm in San Francisco. Peets is our big local chain).

Don't forget Nike and Disney.
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post #22 of 27
the perfect storm. Steve is aligning a bunch of big players and bringing all his weapons to bear for a broadside against M$. I still say his ultimate goal is to crush M$ under his boot heel with the simple elegant Apple lifestyle.
post #23 of 27
[QUOTE=smsm1;1033425]Does anyone remember Steve Jobs in the Keynote about the iPhone, calling Startbucks.../QUOTE]

Yes. Including the people who already mentioned it on this thread.
post #24 of 27
I know this thread should only be about Apple and technology and products, but Starbucks has been responsible for buying up and closing dozens of independent coffee companies in town. The diversity of the market gets more pathetic and it reminds me of Microsoft in the early 1990's. As strategic as this would be for Apple and I'm all for that, I certainly will never go into a Starbucks for any of it. I'm not being anti-smart business, just my way of making an economic statement against Starbucks' influences on the local, social marketplace.
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post #25 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

Personally, I'd rather buy a couple of TV shows or four songs on iTunes than spend $3.99 on a horrible cup of coffee. But I realize that is a matter of taste.

But, put another way, I could do neither, save $120 a month, or $1440 a year, which when annually invested at 10% per for the the next 18 years works out to about $72.5K (say you have a newborn today -- that's a nice chunk of change for his/her college).

Starbucks is the modern substitute (from a financial standpoint) for that daily pack of cigarettes (remember those?)!

A cup of coffee (Venti: 20oz) is less than $2.

The froth drinks are definitely different and cost $3 or more.
post #26 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacGregor View Post

I know this thread should only be about Apple and technology and products, but Starbucks has been responsible for buying up and closing dozens of independent coffee companies in town. The diversity of the market gets more pathetic and it reminds me of Microsoft in the early 1990's. As strategic as this would be for Apple and I'm all for that, I certainly will never go into a Starbucks for any of it. I'm not being anti-smart business, just my way of making an economic statement against Starbucks' influences on the local, social marketplace.

Well, it's not like other recent strategic partners (Nike, Disney, ATT) are exactly poster children for responsible corporate behavior.

I kinda think that at this point Apple would make a deal with bones of Enron if it moved hardware.
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post #27 of 27
Ever since Steve mentioned that you can now transfer files from an iPod to an authorized computer, the kiosk idea has seemed obvious to me. And that's what we're talking about I bet. Imagine a circular table with iPod docs and touch screens. You could be putting music (or movies!) on your pod pretty quickly if the 'hits' were cached on the kiosk.
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