Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Starbucks Picks Google for Wi-Fi in U.S.

Starbucks is replacing AT&T with Google as the provider of in-store Wi-Fi for its company-owned stores across the U.S.  Level 3 Communications will upgrade existing Wi-Fi devices and will manage in-store connectivity.

Beginning in August and extending over the next 18-months, Starbucks will convert more than 7,000 U.S. stores to the upgraded store network and Wi-Fi experience powered by Google.  The company are targeting up to 10 times faster network and Wi-Fi speeds.

In addition to providing faster Wi-Fi, Starbucks and Google will also work together to co-develop the next-generation Starbucks Digital Network.

“Every day, our customers rely on the free Wi-Fi at Starbucks to study, work, connect with friends or just relax. We want to make sure that they can access the web effortlessly and quickly, no matter what they’re doing, or what device they are using,” said Adam Brotman, chief digital officer, Starbucks. “Our goal is to continue to provide our customers with the best in-store experience possible, and we are excited to offer these kinds of unparalleled experiences at a broad scale.”

“Google has always invested in projects that help the Internet grow stronger, including projects that make Internet access more affordable and more widely available. We hope that speedier Internet will make the time customers spend at Starbucks even more enjoyable and productive,” said Kevin Lo, the General Manager of Google Access.

  • In February 2008, Starbucks named AT&T as the provider of Wi-Fi for 7,000 company-owned stores across the U.S.   At the time, the companies planned to offer a mix of free and paid Wi-Fi.  Previously, T-Mobile had been the provider of Wi-Fi in Starbucks across the U.S.