In my book, the best pals come bearing caffeine and this Spring Starbucks is making it easier than ever win friends and influence people with the ability to send Gift cards through iMessage. If you're wondering how to text a Starbucks Gift card to your friend and be the 2:30 PM hero, read on fellow coffee enthusiast, because it's never been a better time to be a friend with Starbucks benefits.
Convenience is key with the new social gifting feature, which debuted in China via the messaging platform WeChat earlier this year. It was announced by Starbucks Chief Technology Officer Gerri Martin-Flickinger at the company’s annual shareholders meeting in Seattle on March 22, that in light of the programs success in China, Starbucks would extend a similar option to the U.S. as well. With the new text feature coming in April, Apple customers will now be able to share the gift of caramel macchiatos and cake pops with the same ease as those using the dedicated Starbucks app.
Sending and receiving the gift of coffee via text will be as simple and easy as it sounds. Apple users can simply go into iMessage on their iPhone or iPad, type out their message, and set the Gift card amount using their connected Apple Pay. Hit "send" (along with all the coffee cup emojis you can fit) and once your chum receives the generous text, they can use it directly at a Starbucks location in its iMessage form or transfer the cash into their Starbucks app for later.
While this feature has been available in the Starbucks mobile app for quite some time, with the update their are no third-parties required. Come April, gone are the days of handing out plastic cards in tiny envelopes — now giving a gift is literally as easy as sending a text. Welcome to the future people!
According to BuzzFeed, with Starbuck's 9 million mobile paying customers — a third of which utilize the order ahead feature — it comes as no surprise that the Seattle-based company is looking to expand its mobile offerings. Around the same time last year, Starbucks announced a new Add-In for Microsoft Outlook users, enabling them to send and receive gift cards over email. Starbucks Gift cards have proven to be the perfect catch-all present around the holidays with one in six American adults receiving this coffee cash over the holidays.
An exact date hasn't been set for the U.S. iMessage rollout yet, but it is anticipated to start in April, around the same time that Starbucks' leadership goes through a major transition. On April 3, current CEO Howard Schultz will step down, and incoming CEO Kevin Johnson will take the helm at the coffee giant. There are countless reasons to spread the joy with a Starbucks gift, from a friend's birthday to a quick congrats on a promotion, so why not take the two seconds and help your friend celebrate with a latte?