Starbucks Partners With Spotify for Interconnected Loyalty Programs, In-Store Song Picks

Longtime iTunes partner Starbucks today announced a brand new music partnership with music streaming service Spotify. Starbucks members will have access to in-store music within the Starbucks app powered by Spotify, and Spotify users will have opportunities to gain Starbucks rewards points.

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“We plan on building one of the most robust digital ecosystems of any retailer in the world. Given the evolution of the music industry and the proliferation of streaming technology, it was natural that we would partner with Spotify in offering our customers a new way to engage with their favorite music,” added Kevin Johnson, president and coo of Starbucks.
The coffee company's 150,000 U.S.-based employees will receive a free Spotify Premium subscription and will be able to use Spotify to influence in-store playlists. Those playlists will then be available to stream within the Starbucks app. Spotify users will also be able to gain rewards points for the Starbucks app and will be able to listen to the in-store playlists within the Spotify apps.

It's unclear whether Starbucks will continue its music partnership with Apple's iTunes. The two companies first established a partnership in 2007, allowing iPod users to figure out what was playing in Starbucks stores. Later, the coffee company began giving away free iTunes songs, which can still be accessed within the Starbucks mobile app. In 2011, Starbucks and Apple extended their partnership to the App Store. More recently, the two companies began teaming up for (Product) Red iTunes / Starbucks gift card combinations.

The new partnership will roll out to the U.S. later this year, with Canada and the United Kingdom to follow thereafter.



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57 months ago



Spotify is such a force right now.


Are they really?

Spotify has 60 million users (including 15 million who pay for the service)

Yet there are potentially billions of people who listen to music.

Streaming is supposed to be the future... but it doesn't look like many people are doing it.
Rating: 5 Votes
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57 months ago
I'm okay with the iTunes/Starbucks Partnership going away. I honestly can't think of a time when I actually enjoyed the little free iTunes songs or apps they provide and give away at Starbucks. Usually from some unknown artist or developer. After trying it, it would often delete it after upon discovering it was just bloatware or junk.
Rating: 5 Votes
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57 months ago
"A way to engage with their music"... No Starbucks, I don't engage with my music, I listen to it.
Rating: 2 Votes
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57 months ago
When is Starbucks going to have its "Supersize Me" moment? Time for Morgan Spurlock to go up against Starbucks. Does anybody else think Starbucks STINKS of the foulest old coffee and vomitous dairy smells?
Rating: 2 Votes
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57 months ago

It has always been a sum of the little things - like Starbucks integration with iTunes - that has made the experience of owning an Apple product a joy. I fear that Apple is getting so big that collaborations like this are a thing of the past. For example, with Apple pay it seems that Apple is taking the "you will come to us" approach to integrating it into stores. Apple, please do not forget your roots - I would love to see more well thought out and well executed instances of merging technology and lifestyle.



They went and signed a whole bunch of retailers, got all the credit card companies on board, including Amex. It's not there fault if a retail conglomerate has their own plans of cashing in on their customers. Nobody forced CVS or Walmart to pull NFC. That was there ace in whole. It works where ever nfc is, unless the retailer has their own agenda.
Rating: 1 Votes
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57 months ago

Are they really?

Spotify has 60 million users (including 15 million who pay for the service)

Yet there are potentially billions of people who listen to music.

Streaming is supposed to be the future... but it doesn't look like many people are doing it.


That's a good point though i do believe there is a large portion of music listeners who are passive listeners. They are just fine with the radio. That's why pandora is still so popular. I dont see apple getting these customers.

Apple will have to poach spotify users
Rating: 1 Votes
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57 months ago

Same boat here. It'll have to be pretty good for me to switch. It'll be easier if there's a family plan, though, as I could quickly justify paying ~$16 for myself and the girlfriend. I'm interested in Apple Watch and Car Play integration as well.


I'd imagine just being as good will get a lot of users to switch so long as there's superior integration with the Apple ecosystem which should be a given. I could be wrong, but that's all it would take for me to switch.
Rating: 1 Votes
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57 months ago
And in a few years Starbucks will partner with someone else...... show me the $$$
Rating: 1 Votes
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57 months ago
Streaming coffee, how did they do it?
Rating: 1 Votes
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57 months ago
I've found a lot of the kids who work for me only use pandora and spotify if it's free otherwise they listen to terrestrial radio. Maybe Apple should just buy spotify? My sister listens to iHeart or Pandora or her DJ Friends' live streams. There isn't going to be another "revolution" in music like what iTunes did they need to expand on to other categories; they are just trying to maximize profit on their existing ones right now.
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