Starbucks announced a change to its iTunes Pick of the Week program on Tuesday that pushes customers to the company's mobile app for free downloads, which had some people thinking the cards they're used to seeing next to the cash register were going away, and soon. Turns out that's not the case, and what Starbucks is really doing is giving away even more free iTunes content every week.
The Pick of the Week
program lets Starbucks customers get a free song, video, book, or app
download every week by dropping in to one of the company's retail
locations and picking up a printed card with a special redemption code.
Starting this week, that changes -- but only sort of. Now, customers
will always be able to download two free iTunes selections each week
instead of just one.
The confusion started when Starbucks' Chief
Digital Officer told CNET that the free download offered though the
company's mobile app was expanding to include more than just music and
added, "This is another step in the direction that we're going to
integrate more things into our mobile application."
that Starbucks is kicking off the change by offering Angry Birds Star
Wars as its first app download, which is a pretty great kick off
The assumption many people jumped to was that this
change was replacing the printed cards we've been seeing in Starbucks
locations for the past few years, which is actually wrong. Instead, the
change means customers can stop by Starbucks and pick up the card of the
week, and they get a second free download through the Starbucks Mobile
app, or by connecting to the in-store Wi-Fi network.
spokesperson told The Mac Observer, "Instead of one free iTunes
download each week, Starbucks customers get two. One from the printed
cards, and one from our mobile app."
You now get two free downloads from the iTunes Store, App Store, or iBookstore every week from Starbucks.
has quietly offered two downloads each week off and on for several
months, but now it's an official change to the program. That's good news
for Starbucks customers since they get to more free content each week,
and it's a smart move for the mega coffee chain since it gives customers
more incentive to come in. For developers, artists, and authors, it's
great, too, because now there will be more opportunities for their
content to get exposure.
If you can't get to a Starbucks each
week you can still get a free download through the company's mobile app.
A free in-app offering shows up in user's in-app Messages, and they can
download it by opening the message and tapping the Download Now
But Stratus is not a 99-cent application, clarifies
Amanda North, AOptixs marketing vice president. The app sells for $199,
and the company isnt disclosing how much its peripheral costs. While
conceivably any individual who wants to drop that much money can rig his
or her iPhone for biometric collection can, its not a consumer
application, North says.
Its also not designed for every iPhone:
AOptix built Stratus for the iPhone 4 and 4S, citing what it says was
customer request. It doesnt work with the iPhone 5, and the company isnt
saying what its plans are for future iPhone upgrades.
AOptix doesnt specify its customers, but theyre from the U.Online shopping for drycabinet from a great selection of Clothing.S.A parkingmanagement is
a plastic card that has a computer chip implanted into it that enables
the card. government: Pritikin says the company has substantial interest
across a wide variety of agencies, not just DOD [the Department of
Defense]. At a time of government austerity, its a bit curious that the
company would have picked high-end Apple devices for its mobile
biometrics platform: the Army, for instance, likes cheaper Android
phones. Pritikin says AOptix chose iOS because its a much more secure
The Stratus system is designed to be a single-handed device,We are one of the leading manufacturers of formalofficdresses in
Chennai India. Pritikin explains. Load the app and tap for iris
scanning or facial recognition. The imaging display, readable from about
11 inches distant and using nothing more than the iPhones camera,Wear a
whimsical Disney landscapeoilpaintings straight
from the Disney Theme Parks! will automatically focus and snap the
shot. The phones ambient microphone handles voice recording, but
fingerprint scanning comes from the back of the Stratus peripheral
wraparound, not the iPhones touchscreen. Unlike a similar product from
Tactivo, theres no smartcard reader, but it scans more biometric data
than someones fingerprint.
Anyone whos ever used an iPhone will
also be familiar with the Stratus apps user experience for typing in
annotations to the biometrics collected: small fields that look like any
other iOS text feature allow quick notations. Standard iPhone
geo-tagging is easy to enable, as a demo walkthrough AOptix showed
Danger Room demonstrated.About carpark in
China userd for paying transportation fares and for shopping. SMTP
email functions transmit the biometric information back to a customers
database. And an open architecture allows Stratus customers to develop
their own add-ons.
The California-based company AOptix rolled
out a new hardware and app package that transforms an iPhone into a
mobile biometric reader. As first reported by Danger Room in February,
AOptix is the recipient of a $3 million research contract from the
Pentagon for its on-the-go biometrics technology.
what it considers ease of use, the company decided to build its latest
biometrics package, which it calls Stratus, atop an iPhone. A peripheral
covering wraps around the phone its an inch and a half thick, three
inches wide and six inches tall while the AOptix Stratus app presents a
user interface familiar to any iOS user. Except youre not going to be
recording Vine videos, youre going to be recording the most unique
physical features of another human being.
From an end-user
perspective, its much, much smaller, lighter and easier to use an
app-based capability than the bulky biometrics tools currently in
military use, Joey Pritikin, an AOptix vice president, tells Danger
Room. Anyone whos used an iPhone before can pick this up and use it.