Enabling Technologies

Now Pay for Coffee at Starbucks using a SmartWatch

We all are aware of Starbucks’ popular mobile payment method. But you can forget paying through a phone: A new way to pay has emerged that requires you to simply flash your wrist at the point-of-sale. People have migrated to mobile apps for payments in order to gain the convenience of not carrying extra cards around. But things are getting even more convenient with the advent of Android Wear-powered apps.

To leverage the Android Wear technology, Vesh Ventures has launched WearBucks, a dedicated Starbucks app for smartwatches. The app is in the beta stage. Users can set up their cards in the app and set the default one for payment. After this, simple voice commands can initiate the payment. A user can say, “OK Google, start Pay for Starbucks,” to make the payment.

The app generates a bar code on the small smartwatch screen that can be scanned at the payment terminal. Customers with a dedicated Starbucks account can also load their card numbers by logging in to that account in the smartwatch app. The app displays the balance of the card loaded.


It has been debatable whether wearable devices can really make a mark when it comes to payments. Starbucks is the best place to start testing wearable-device-oriented payments. The coffee giant still hasn’t decided whether it should integrate wearable devices into its mobile payment services, but WearBucks can certainly help it make a better decision.

In just over a decade, digitization has caused a dramatic change in the function, purpose and design of the payments channel. Wearable payments will be one way customers conduct transactions. It is all about convenience and the speed of the transaction. Look at the number of wearable devices being launched by big names such as Apple, Google, Motorola and Samsung.

For now we’re seeing some interesting payment-technology advancements in the field of wearable devices. As the number of connected devices soars, the possibility for wearable-payment technology suddenly becomes a reality. Wearable technology is likely to grow, since the sudden expansion of the “Internet of Things” is transforming the way we think about connectivity.

According to Cisco, the number of Internet-connected devices will grow from 13 billion in 2013 to 50 billion in 2020. This totally the changes the way we think about payments.


Ray has keen interest in the area of devices, OS and wireless technologies. He is a Mobile Technology enthusiast and believes that Mobility is going to completely change the way we do Payments and Commerce. He wishes to share this belief with the world by providing such content through LetsTalkPayments. Ray has done his engineering as well as MBA.

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