Waiting for official Windows Phone support from Starbucks? Don't hold your breath


Starbucks has remained on the side lines when it came to Windows Phone and this doesn't look to be changing any time soon. We've witnessed numerous unofficial apps hitting the store from eager developers, but what about official support from the popular coffee house chain? One of our readers provided some feedback about a need for a Windows Phone client and received a response from the company. Cut short: don't hold your breath for one in the near future.

Here's what was received from Starbucks:

"We have continued to look at the Windows phone platform and listen to our customer’s needs. As we grow and evolve our mobile applications, we seek to develop on the platforms where we see the greatest opportunity. At this time we will not support the Windows phone platform but will continue to evaluate it as the landscape evolves. Windows mobile will be looked into more with Starbucks District Department."

So there you have it, folks. Windows Phone is currently not on the menu and won't be for some time. We can rest assured the comments and feedback has been passed on to the correct department and will continue to do so. So keep requesting an app if you want one. There were two popular apps - My Starbucks Card and Starbux Card - that catered to the needs of those who require some beans, but we'd certainly love to see some love from Starbucks.

Thanks, someoneinwa, for the information!


Reader comments

Waiting for official Windows Phone support from Starbucks? Don't hold your breath



Yeah, which stinks. My wife uninstalled it to try to fix an issue but then wasn't able to reinstall it. I still have it and it's very well done.

Wow... I was about to reinstall... I know this happened at one point and was back the next day. Hopefully that happens again. Only one that let you check your rewards.

I emailed the dev and they responded the following day. Stating the disappearance of their app was a mistake on Microsoft's part...and the glitch with the store locator is Starbucks fault

Just upgraded to WP8, my first thought was that it was only available on WP7 which was disappointing. Hopefully it will be back soon. Thanks for the info.

What is the advantage of using a Starbucks app?  I have gone there from time-to-time, paid with my debit card, which seems just as simple, if not more so, than using a phone app.  So, even if Starbucks had the very best Windows Phone app in the world, what would be the advantage of using it?

Registering and using\reloading card gets you benefits like free food\drinks or free syrups, etc. Its a nice perk if you go to Starbucks a lot. If not a regular then you may\may not find features like location finder or drink builder (shows you nutrition facts based on your customized drink) handy.

Free drink on your birthday. Free drink after you've made a certain number of drink purchases within a particular timeframe. Occasional special promo offers. Nice perks really, if you go there frequently.

Right, like the others say, you are then using your registered account which gives you access to periodic perks. However, you get the same benefit by having a registered starbucks card, which you can re-load with money as needed. I do this. I would like to have an official app but I'm also cool with using my registered card indefinitely tbh.

Wells Fargo just to me they don't annouce apps before they release them. So there's no way to know if they're working on a wp client or not.

No dunkin donut, either Winchell's or Mom and Pop's donuts. Do you want coffee with your donuts?

Starbucks is so overrated, anyway. It would be good for the WP platform as a whole, but I'm not too bothered by their lack of enthusiasm.

I have less enthusiasm for their coffee than they do for WP, so who cares.

And can someone tell me what a Starbucks app is anyway? I mean it's a coffee house (well it puports to be), what would an app do? Tell you that you can get better coffee next door at Pret, Costa, Nero, Coffee Republic, or any independent coffee shop....

The Starbucks app on IOS let you reload/pay with your SB card. Also view your earned stars/rewards and send gift cards. The best part is Starbucks would send your codes for free songs/tv shows/app downloads linked directly through the app. It was free and worth the dl on my apple devices.

It's been years since I've been into a Starbucks, I've no idea what those things are, but I guess if you are a regular there then it's a useful feature. Thanks for the info.

What needs to happen is to put Wallet to use.  What the heck is the point of Wallet if you cant use it - at starbux or wherever.  Its Windows Phone team pointing not owning up to the shortcomings...instead of innovating.

I cant be mad at Starbucks. I love windows everything (Lumia 920 & surface pro owner). But Microsoft needs to do a better job of marketing, so we could get alot more users on the platform. Then after that we will be having all the developers wanting to hop aboard.

Why are alot of developers saying they'll wait to see it evolve THEN hop aboard? Why don't they HELP evolve it by hopping aboard now....

Exactly. Starbucks sent me this exact response when I wrote them too and I responded with something like this. It's ass backwards. The platform needs apps. Popularity for the platforms grows with a broader app ecosystem. The most mindset Starbucks has here is illogical. Build it and they will come.

It's up to the Microsoft and end users to spread the word (and love) of WP.  The masses need to be informed why they should get a WP over another.  They need to learn what it can do that the other platforms can't.  Microsoft isn't doing a good job of this.  Until then WP is only going to be seen as a niche OS.  It's up to the users to show enthusiam in the product.
It's irrational to blame companies for not dedicating resources for developing WP apps when WP only have 4% market share (in the US).  Businesses aren't about doing what feels good, they're about what is going to make the most $$.

And they are doing a good job spreading the word. They currently have 5.6% market share. Grown over the last 12 months increased 1.8%. Android grew at 1.4%. Not bad in a saturated market.
As a user, I showed enthusiasm. I jumped on board right away. Came from a Galaxy Nexus. Got a 920. Fantastic hardware. Great OS with excellent usability. But guess what. I left. Back to Android. You know why?  The Ecosystem. I thought it would be fine.  They had a good core group of apps that should do everything I need, and over time it would grow. MS is offering a lot of money up to app developers to develop on this platform.  Begging devs in fact. Des sit on the sideline and say, "I'll wait and see what happens before investing time". Guess what? I had to bail.  Not much movement in 6 months on the app front, at least for what I was interested in. People not like me will stay longer but how long will they wait for the apps to come?
As far as responsibility? Sure, it's not Starbucks or anyone else's job to make the OS successful, but they will have direct impact on it's success and demise. The OS is only part of the story. There is a reason people tout the "eco system" so fervently.

Um because companies like money and do not like taking on risks.....the smart companies anyways. The wise saying goes "don't count your chickens until they hatch" not "help evolve the eggs so you can count your chickens."

In this case with a large company that deals with a lot of mobile tech users, I think a risk bigger than developing an app is to not evolve for its customers and the future. I mean, it's not like they're being asked to heavily invest in the OS itself or like they're dealing with some fly-by internet startup; it's MS, who're likely going to still be at it with Windows 9 and WP9.

Also, I'm pretty sure the saying you mentioned is about not getting cocky by celebrating before finishing. Besides, if you don't take care of eggs, they won't become chickens for counting.

@ tomatoes11
Starbucks can develop the app and write off the cost against paying tax in the UK. Better than buying coffee beans at $1000 a kilo from Luxembourg.

You're pretty much correct. I visit 2-3 different SB during the week, and each one has the standard group of trendy iDiots with their trendware pros.
I am seeing more PC/Laptop users though, humanity may yet survive the Stupidocoplypse

You should see Austin's local coffee houses. It's all Mac nerds. I went in there with a late 90s Powerbook as a joke and one of these kids asked me what it was.

That was lame as Hell.

Yup, I went to school there. Try asking them why they got a mac over a PC. Hint: its hilarious how dumb their reasoning is.

Yeah for most part, thanks. Still notice they wig out on occasion but I've learned how to kick stuff back on. Thanks.

:-) I had problem with amazon mobile apps, it disabled my live tiles, and when I uninstalled it everything is alright again, just FYI.

You see this all over. A tragic reminder that MS did once have a dominant ecosystem that people knew about. :-S

I was in Seattle for my honeymoon and one would think as SB is in MSFT backyard they would have something worked out. Also the TV in our hotel could be controlled by your cell but iOS & Android only. If anywhere in the world I would have expected WP support it would be Seattle.

The fact they continue to call it "Windows Mobile" should be a clue that they could care less about the platform.
Whatever though.

I read.. "we are looking for opportunities to maximize profit, and WP is not one of them. We only care about our customers on platforms where the potential for profit is greatest. When WP becomes profitable for us then we will acknowledge those loyal customers of ours. Until then Fuckem!""

Why do I need an app for Starbucks?

There is a Starbucks on practically every corner of every town near me as well as on the corner of every town not near me, so I certainly don't need an app to locate the nearest $6 cup of coffee.

Oh! I forgo! I might need one the next time I'm driving through the desert on my way to Winnemucca, Nevada

Forget about trying to bloat the app count just for the sake of bloating. Leave that to the other platforms.

Bring in good, quality useful apps instead.

For those of us who frequent Starbucks and a part of their rewards system where visits translates to free drinks, etc, the app is very handy and convenient.
Does Starbucks have the BEST coffee - no, but they are pretty good and have the best staff out of any "fast food" business.
I, along with countless others, can walk in a location, get in line and out drink will already be made before reaching the cashier.
They see a regular customer and know your name and your drink and you are always greeted by a genuinely kind/nice/fun person.

Well, out here on the West Coast, I go to In N Out Burger often for lunch as there is one near where I work. The employees there certainly rival Starbucks in friendliness and customer service. Many of the employees recognize me and know what my usual Double-Double order is.

Despite that, I can easily live without an In N Out Burger App.

An official Kaiser Medical App giving me the ability to set or cancel appointments, check on prescriptions, communicate with the medical staff etc, would be useful though.

First, let me say how envious I am that you can easily get to an In N Out. The nearest one to me (and I know exactly where it is) is over 600 miles.
Second, up here in Washington there are Starbucks everywhere. I have TWO within 10 minutes walk from my house. So I don't need the app to tell me where one is. Even when I travel to other cities, finding Starbucks is rarely a problem.
As others have told you, the value of the app is in handling electronic payments, recharging my loyalty card, keeping track of balances and rewards and so on. For those of us who do like Starbucks coffee, it would be handy. The SBUX Card app I use on my Windows Phone is very good and I've used it since it was released, but I just want Starbucks (a Seattle corporation) to support Microsoft (another Seattle corporation, OK, Redmond) and the thousands of Microsoft employees in this area, and their families and friends who help support Starbucks. I suspect this has as much to do with how far in bed Starbucks is with Apple and other corporate reasons than it does about the silly, vague answers I got from the company in response to my complaint.
Now, if you're heading to In N Out today, think of me while you enjoy that burger! 

The purpose of the app is not to find a starbucks near you. It's to manage your starbucks rewards card, and to present you witha barcode that can be scanned rather than having to cary around their giftcards. It's very usefull if you frequent starucks and are in their reweards program. 
It's not a compliated app, I could probably port it myself in a few days given their android version. 

You should do it like Daniel "Instance", and Rudy "6sec vine", so we WP community will not depend on this companies whether they like Windows or not.

When will you guys understand that its not about our, the minority's, perception of WP's app count, rather their, the majority's, perception of if WP has enough apps... When trying to increase market share the majority, no matter how annoying they are, are who matters.

Man f*ck Starbucks and that nasty coffee they overprice. A bag of Godiva Hazelnut Creme coffee and Amaretto cream is much better than anything they serve.

Really guys? Gays drink at Starbucks, gay for liking Godiva. What's with that? I personally feel that people are too politically correct these days but still... Now you're just being silly.
You were talking about someone's preference in coffee, right? Keep it at that, please.
And this was directed at both, not just you absolutshame, I just replied to the last one. Sorry about that.

Am I the only one who found it amusing that they said "...our customer's needs"? Note the placement of the apostrophe - apparently they only have one customer. ;-)

Ok, Mr. spelly pants.. Mr. Gramy pants.. Mr.. Spellchecky pants.. Mr. Englishy pants.. Mr. Pantsy pants.. Pantsy pants Mr. pants pants pants....... Pants!

I want to support the WP community in requesting for an app but I want to know... What exactly does a Starbucks app do?

The primary benefit is to keep track of your rewards points and free drink awards. And to conviently reload your card. And send gift cards to friends virtually. Very handy.

You also generate a barcode for your Starbucks card so you pay using your phone. The unofficial apps (my Starbucks card) can do this as week as track your balance, points etc.

I have continued to look at the Starbucks Coffee platform and listen to my wallet’s needs. As I grow and evolve my coffee buying experience, I seek to support coffee shops where I see the greatest value and customer appreciation. At this time I will not support Starbucks but may continue to evaluate it as the landscape evolves. 

Well Starbucks is an ardent supporter of equal civil rights e.g. Marriage equality, employment equality and such. So for me, I support Starbucks. Plus I like their coffee. I also like gevalia and intelligencia coffee and others...

I currently use Starbux Card app. Great except fact I can't reload my card (I currently use IOS app to do that). Once hipsters pick up WP, Starbucks will change its stance.

Same here. My wifes old iPhone 4 is now basically my iPod touch. Keep it for iExpenseit (note: me and coworker are developing a WP expense tracking app that doesn't suck to help close this gap) and to reload my Starbucks card. Oh and occasional Facetime with my wife.

My Starbucks card has not been available for quite some time. I heard from the developer that it was removed from the Marketplace/Store at the request of Starbucks for logo infringement.
I am totally surprised to see Starbux removed now too - maybe they will tweak it and release it again?
I wish that more retailers like AMC would release apps for Windows Phone AND support the MS Wallet (acts similar to Camera Lens')
I was hoping Starbucks would adopt the MS Wallet too - after all, they generate like 80% of all mobile payments world wide.
That said, there is a Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf just a couple blocks further than my Starbucks and their app allows me to design my drink on my phone and place the order wirelessly too. :)

Would be nice to have an official app, but without NFC mobile transactions, I probably wouldn't use it anyway. If Microsoft were clever, they'd partner with them when the launch NFC payments and market it toward business users. 

Nothing, but scanning barcodes isn't isn't new and wont entice people like tap and pay with NFC. They need it to be a strong selling point.

I use Starbucks Finder by Sensibility. Unfortunately it has stopped working. I hope Starbucks hasn't squashed them.

I always play around with Starbuck near my work place.  I stopped by their store on the way to get lunch and told them that I forgot my wallet.  I told them if I could pay by my phone.  They said yes.  I asked them where the app for it on WP8.  When they told me that there was none, I told them 'oh too bad', and walked away.  Now every time I go for lunch, I always stop by and ask if they have the app for WP8 yet.  I walk away everytime they say 'no' ... lol ...

Just use My Starbucks Card or Starbucks Finder or one of the other unofficial apps. I mean I get it that you want the official app, but in the meantime there are other solutions...

SBUX works just fine for me. I get free Starbucks all the time, thanks to Bing rewards and I get a code to put on a card in the app and they scan it and bam. Free coffee.

Just wait a bit longer, until next year, they're all coming...Instagram, Starbucks, you name it.............................PSYCH!

Oh well? This app thing is going to be a continues issue. Find a good app and buy it, put it under contract, what ever. Competition. Starbucks app? Don't think that will turn too many away.

When they start serving descent coffee I might care. Most off there stores in Australia have gone under because no one likes the bitter rubbish they give you.

Never liked Starbucks anyway. Why spend $4.00 for a cup of coffee when I can get a better cup for $1.50 at my local convenience store.

Sorry but the last time I saw a Starbucks menu for a large, or whatever the hell they call it, was $3.89 for just regular coffee. Oh, and let's not forget that they just announced that they are raising prices even though the cost of coffee beans is dropping.

While the smallest size is around $1.50 for a regular brew, the high end stuff like Frappuccinos, which are desserts can run a bit more. Some markets cost more. New York's pricing on a grande (medium) latte is around $4.50.

I think it's like $2.75 here in Austin. And this is farking Austin, where I fork over a grand a month for a flea trap apartment. Sorry, I don't often pay attention. They're not so expensive that I give much of a crap.

After reading this I realized that a good portion of apps are not available on WP. For example instagram, snapchat, for those in Canada scotiabank mobile banking app and now Starbucks. What these companies are failing to realize is that WP is evolving and what I've noticed watching most tv shows and movies im not seeing iPhones or androids or blackberry in them a whole lot any more, im seeing the Samsung ativ s or the Nokia WPs. These corporations need to wake up a smell the coffee WP users won't give up until we get the official apps that are only exclusive to apple or Android and maybe blackberry phones.

I just emailed Starbuck and I think all of you should, I am pissed. I guess no more Starbucks for me untill they bring thier app to the millions of us with Windows Phones.

Yup going to do the same instead of bringing out the pitch forks which seems to be what everyone else wants. I write emails to Instagram, Pocket, Snapchat, Path, Google and various others at least once a week to make sure they know the market is here to me I'm doing something compared to just complaining.

Can you post links to who you email? I'd love to do something a bit more constructive than whine and complain. instagram's page makes a contact link impossible to find!

For Pocket, search WP8 Pocket and it'll take you to their website should be pretty straight forward from there. My last time I talked to them they were in the process of a private beta but I didn't get in on time. Path is the same way just go to their site and you'll find the email. Instagram's is support@instagram.com

Any company that makes billions of dollars a year and says they can't support the OS I use doesn't want me to buy their products.

Don't be sad people. If their App was to be like what they call "coffee", you aren't missing anything AT ALL.

I think dish-washing water tastes better than what they serve at Starbutts.

Fully agreed. And they put sticky syrup into it to cover up the bad taste of their excuse for coffee *shudder*.

Oh well, we shouldn't "have plans to support" them either. Coffee Bean made a pretty sweet app and they are rolling out Qi wireless charging in their stores. The app will direct you to the closest location with that (or any other) feature.

I don't even like coffee, but I date in LA. Frequenting places to "meet up for coffee" is required. :)

Wrong, I own a Lumia 920, which I bought at full price 2 months ago. Doesn't mean I can't complain about the lack of OS features and apps.

Fair enough! If you support the platform then you have a right to state your problems with it.. You're no different than the rest of us.. Bitch on my dude❕❕

Some of the comments on this article are really dumb. Boycotting Starbucks because they don't make a Windows Phone app? Come on. Starbucks Finder is a FANTASTIC app that I have been using since the day I got my Focus S November 2011. I use it to find nearby Starbucks with realtime info on what's open/closed, and use it to pay with my Starbucks card. Also, $15 coffees? Come on. A medium coffee is $1.90.

From the way Starbucks put it they sound like they are putting making profit over giving ALL of their loyal customers the full experience.. Maybe they should've worded that reply differently.. I think that's what's pissing a lot of users off.. Not, so much the fact that they won't release a app for WP, but how they come off.. I guess its no different than a small town asking for Starbucks to open a shop in a area where they wouldn't get much business.. I can understand why they wouldn't do that.. The whole thing just proves how dire a situation it is for WP market share to increase..

I would think its a significantly higher business risk and just a tad more expensive to build a Starbucks in a town of 200 people then it is to design a mobile app.

What??? Corporations putting profit ahead of anything else??? Shocked!!! You can't single out Starbucks for doing this and not apply this same logic to every single business out there...

I'm boycotting Star*ucks anyway because IMHO their *cough* coffee tastes like water. Too weak, plus I strongly dislike sugary syrups in my coffee. I know I can get coffee without that stuff in Star*ucks, tried it once, which made me realize how bad their coffee is once you have nothing in it to cover that bad taste. Give me strong coffee that tastes like real coffee over that Star*ucs stuff any day.

Too each their own. I love Starbucks coffee and their rewards system. Starbucks Finder generates a barcode for my rewards card.

I'd rather have an app to my favorite lounge so they will have a cold beer and an order of hot wings already on the bar when I walk in.

Does not matter to me personally as I don't think that fluid, sugary, sticky stuff they serve in Starbucks can even be called"Coffee", but to each its own. Regarding Apps to collect reward points. Once you have, say, 30 Apps for 30 shop for collecting reward points, is this really, really so convenient?

To each their own. The My Starbucks Card app is on my start page and I use it all the time. I like Starbucks coffee over Coffee Bean which tastes bitter to me.

To each their own, I agree. The thing is I usually find coffee from little Cafés or bars that own a good espresso machine much , much better than anything you get from store chains. Usually (at least here, which is Switzerland btw) those machines are in small, not belonging to a big chain shops.
Still silly of Star*buck to ignore WP.

TBH I think the only coffee I have drunk that tastes worse than Starbucks is Burger King's. I prefer Costa Coffee and Nero's myself. I certainly wont be sending a request to Starbucks for an app, however you'd have thought they would have enough cash to make one from all the unpaid UK tax they manage to get out of paying.

Totally agree, although I've never had coffee in BK (cannot imagine that, probably tastes like Bovril).
But why would anyone need a Starbucks app? What are you doing with it anyway?

I don't drink the overrated, heavily over priced (at least here in the Netherlands) coffee. You can get REAL coffee over here for far less money. So Starbucks not being enthusiastic about WP? I won't be losing sleep over it.

I'll add this to the list of reasons why I don't frequent Starbucks. So far it includes tax avoidance, overpriced and poor quality coffee, overfamiliarity from staff (I'd rather you didn't write my first name on my cup of coffee, thank you).

Makes me feel like Windows Phone is the new Rock radio..."Man, these bands are awesome, how come you never play them?" "If they're so awesome, how come they're not tearing up the charts?" "...cuz YOU never play them, you suck!" ~Airheads

Disappointing to see another big retailer not supporting windows phone. I am not a Starbucks drinker but its an example of another reason why the platform is weak in terms of first party apps and its going to take a lot of time to be anywhere close to IOS and Android pretty frustrating this is still a major issue....

Most companies build apps bases on demand, if they didn't anticipate well, SB has been known to be customer friendly. If all of the WP fans request for an app, likely to have an effect on the perceived demand??

"Windows mobile"
the person answering from starbucks had no idea what he was even talking about
anyway if starbucks refuses to invest in an app, we can refuse to buy coffey from them and find a better place, maybe support you small local coffey shop instead

funny i tried downloading the two apps mentioned at the end of the article and none of them work...they both say they are no longer aviable in the store...anyone know any other Xbux card apps we can use in the meantime?

This, in a nutshell, is indicative of the massive Elephant that's not just "in the room"... but essentially answering the platform's front door. Even us Microsoft Partners can't blindly overlook the fact that you can have the BEST hardware, the BEST mobile OS, and the BEST user experience... Only to have the term "BEST" re-defined by the perception of the platform by the "big everyday companies" in most user's lives like Starbucks, Verizon Fios, etc. essentially choosing not to invest development dollars in this platform until they see meaningful market share numbers. I cannot blame them, though I've been loyal to Windows phone way way back before iPhone ever hit the scene. By the way, telling them it's the fastest growing mobile platform and that it had eclipsed BlackBerry brings yawns and eye-rolling. They need to see amazing adoption rates that make a compelling case to their powers that be that essentially FORCES them to invest in apps for the platform. Microsoft rather blindly assumed that focusing on Windows 8 and ignoring Windows Phone (Leaving Nokia to market alone) would encourage developers to develop apps for both. Well, that didn't work out as quickly as they'd hoped, now did it? Now, they will pay up to $100,000 for major apps... but that should have been DAY 1, not after the fact which now appears desperate. Remember... I love this platform and it HAS made great strides in spite of Microsoft ignoring it. Having "48 of the top 50 most-downloaded apps" is a pretty nice job in 9 months since Windows Phone 8. Now, though-- a major shift in focus has to occur to focus on Windows Phone and promoting "loss-leaders" on the Microsoft side to encourage companies to develop apps for the entire Windows ecosystem. Very "Chicken and Egg" status quo currently where the platform needs to shrug off the "doesn't have your apps" image quickly yet to do so-- they have to establish much greater market share to attract companies to develop said apps where said companies make app development decisions based on Market Share. Let's see if Balmer "Gets it" in the upcoming restructuring and lets see if the "cheap Lumia" gamble overseas starts bearing market share fruit! ;-)

Some get paid by competing companies.  i.e in this case, who knows, the fruit brand could have paid Starbucks to withdraw its app for windows phone.  Don’t want to start a controversy, however, the politics of business is very very ugly!

It is rather silly these huge companies are like OMG really? Like it's that big a deal to spend a few dollars of their fortune to have someone make a simple app that could make them even more millions! I say simple because I am sure whoever they would have make it can whip it up a lot faster then me! :)

"Windows mobile will be looked into more with Starbucks District Department."
Windows mobile.  WINDOWS MOBILE.  They have given WP zero thought if they're still calling it this.

Translation - F*** WP... -sigh-... sall good.. i still like my 810 for its awesome battery life and never ending free streaming music.

Just to ask a simple question.
What would it cost Starbucks to create a Windows App?
My guess is that it has nothing to do wth costs, just laziness, same thing for Wells Fargo...

Dear article author - Please provide a starbucks email address so that we can reach out to Starbucks individually. thank-you.