21 September 2014

starbucks woes

i love starbucks coffee. i am a regular at the store on cedar bluff. i know the personnel, and most know me. i even know former employees. and i spend a good chunk of money with them.

but this past month has been frustrating with regard to payment options.

it started with the upgrade of their android app. about a month ago, i started getting email announcements of a new app with features and a new interface. i became excited. new apps are always a small thrill. but when they don’t work, it can be quite the disappointment.

after eagerly checking google play store more frequently than normally, i finally saw the starbucks app on the updates list. i clicked to make it new, waited, and jumped to my main screen, and tapped the app.

it started up…but then crashed. i tried again. same result. i went through the stand rituals of clearing cache, clearing data, and finally reinstalling the app. crashed every time.


i decided to go back to an older app (unofficially starbucks). after shuffling around a backup of that app’s database, the payment screen wouldn’t display the payment barcode.

i also had the bright idea to do a screen grab of the barcode from the working app on an older phone, but drm protection squelched my plan.

since the app didn’t work, i was loathed to pull out the physical card with which to keep up. when trying to pay, the card registered empty. great.

i am running android L preview. if it had been released less than thirty days ago, i wouldn’t be too upset. it has been out since june, long before i started receiving the teaser emails. that means plenty of time to test against the future operating system. it would have been in their best interest to develop toward this change.

it has always felt as if starbucks treats their android customer base as an afterthought. it took them years after the apple device owners had an app to provide one for the other group. and this app might not be problematic to merely the cutting edge crew. read the latest comments in the store to find many others having new-app issues.


if you haven’t upgraded yet, don’t.

i can still pay with credit card, cash, or make my coffee at home until they fix this. it’s definitely a first-world problem. i will continue to be a fan and buy their coffee. it just bugs me. and i have a blog.