“Starbucks Corp on Tuesday unveiled a new kind of coffee shop serving up custom music CDs along with foamy coffee drinks,” Duncan Martell and Chris Stetkiewicz report for Reuters. “Years of customer queries about the music piped into its ubiquitous coffee shops prompted Starbucks to tap into a new revenue stream, which might also keep customers in its stores long enough to order another latte.”
“‘We do see this as an add-on to the Starbucks experience, but we also think there is a real business here,’ said Don MacKinnon, Starbucks vice president, music and entertainment. Using a variety of computer gear and support provided by Hewlett-Packard Co., Starbucks customers will be able to record five songs for $6.99 — about twice the price of a double-tall latte — in about three minutes,” Martell and Stetkiewicz report.
“Starbucks world-wide chain now includes more than 7,600 cafes and executives foresee it growing to more than 25,000. Palo Alto, California-based HP supplied about 70 of its Tablet PCs, workstations and CD publishing and printing systems, along with its trademark printers at the music cafe. HP also designed the user interface and the software. The store uses HP’s data storage gear and HP ProLiant servers store the more than 10,000 available albums and 100,000 song titles.,” Martell and Stetkiewicz report.
“‘We have done it in a way that a person will walk out of Starbucks with something that feels like they bought it at a store,’ Felice Swapp, director of strategic initiatives for HP said. ‘It’s allowing your typical Uncle Bob to start getting into this digital mobile lifestyle.’ HP in January also announced plans to soon sell a digital music player based on Apple Computer Inc.’s popular iPod player, which will be available by around June or July. In addition to the player, HP will also make Apple’s popular iTunes digital music jukebox and online music store available to HP customers starting in March and April. Financial terms were not disclosed,” Martell and Stetkiewicz report. “When asked if HP’s new player will be incorporated into the Starbucks musical venture, Starbucks chairman Howard Schultz said: ‘It’s a possibility. We’ll have to see.'”
Full article here.
Related MacDailyNews article:
Starbucks to enter digital music market with HP – will they use Apple iTunes? – March 11, 2004