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CNN reports that Starbucks is making changes to its mobile app:

"This fall, you'll be able to pay for Starbucks drinks on your app using -- get this -- a credit card, Apple Pay, Google Pay or even cash. And yes, you'll still be able to collect stars for rewards.

"Starbucks regulars are familiar with reload panic. For years, customers have been required to load money onto a Starbucks card to buy food and drinks through the app and collect rewards. Although the app lets customers reload funds automatically when their balance is too low, they can't currently opt to pay for the transaction directly from a credit or debit card -- or cash."

But now, CNN reports, "Customers in the United States and Canada will be able to pay Starbucks for the amount of their order directly from whatever payment method they choose. They'll also be able to order from the app and choose to pay by handing a barista a physical credit card or cash."

But all things will not be equal - because if you use alternative payment methods, you'll only get half the stars you would otherwise.

KC's View:

This strikes me as silly … and it is a good bet that if there is any blowback from consumers, Starbucks will reverse itself on this decision.  I mean, I'm still spending a lot of money for a cup of coffee, and I'm still choosing Starbucks instead of someone else.  Why penalize me?

Sometimes, I worry that Starbucks is breathing its own exhaust, and increasingly is taking an "our way or the highway" approach.  That's not where I would want to be, and it seems particularly tone-deaf at a time when it is coming off a time  when almost all its stores were shuttered during the pandemic.