Starbucks moves to AT&T hot spots and away from T-Mobile

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Starbucks Corp. Monday said it is moving away from T-Mobile Wi-Fi and will transition its customers to AT&T Inc.’s Wi-Fi service in more than 7,000 of its high-end coffee shops beginning this spring.

Starbucks said its T-Mobile HotSpot customers will have continued Wi-Fi services at no extra cost because of a deal between AT&T and T-Mobile. Company officials could not be reached for further comment.

Starbucks has been using AT&T point-of-sale and other technologies for more than 10 years, so the Wi-Fi business with AT&T represents a new “comprehensive communications agreement” that allows Starbucks to streamline business operations while also enhancing the customer experience, Starbucks said in a statement.

In a separate statement, the two companies said the new Wi-Fi services will be a mix of free and paid Wi-Fi offers. For AT&T, the deal means that there will be 17,000 U.S. hot spots for its Wi-Fi network and more than 70,000 globally. Up to two hours of free Wi-Fi service per day will be available for Starbucks card holders, while AT&T U-verse Internet customers will have unlimited free access.

Of course, AT&T is Apple’s exclusive provider for its popular iPhone. Apple also announced a deal with Starbucks last year allowing iPhone users to purchase songs they hear in the coffee shops directly from iTunes.

Macworld’s Jim Dalrymple contributed to this report.

This story, "Starbucks moves to AT&T hot spots and away from T-Mobile" was originally published by Computerworld.

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