Here’s Why Everyone Is Obsessed With Starbucks


How Starbucks is using blockchain, IoT and AI to transform the customer experience

Starbucks Coffee Company has defined the morning coffee experience for hundreds of thousands of people around the globe, for years now. With over 14,000 stores in the US alone, Starbucks has an overwhelming market share in the coffee space. Even though its coffee can be quite polarising, with some calling it “Charbucks” for its dark-roasted brews and bitter taste, it has grown on to become one of the most recognizable brands on the planet. But if not for coffee, what has enabled Starbucks to build such a loyal customer base? Why is Starbucks the number one coffee maker in the world?

The Experience

Visting a Starbucks is always an experience. Starbucks is selling you the whole experience, it just happens to be selling beverages as a part of it. The whole atmosphere of the shop is designed in such a way for people to experience a cup of coffee rather than just buy a cup of coffee. Right when you step into a Starbucks, you know exactly what you’re going to get, from the aroma in the store to your misspelled name on the cup. Coupled with great customer service and quality control, Starbucks has become one of the biggest fast-food companies in the world second only to McDonald’s.

IoT Dangers snip | Data Driven Investor

Tech At Play

Starbucks has already rolled out its massively successful mobile app a few years ago, streamlining the whole experience for customers. Starbucks, thus already have valuable customer data via its app and knows your likes and dislikes. And now Starbucks is more ambitious than ever regarding its technology.

Starbucks has partnered with Microsoft Azure to create a more intelligent customer experience with an internal AI platform called “Deep Brew”. Based on reinforcement learning models, “Deep Brew” can provide recommendations based on your taste, most popular choices in your local Starbucks and even your current weather conditions. This will help Starbucks to better meet the preferences of their diverse and worldwide customer base.

Starbucks has also come up with IoT(Internet of Things) coffee machines, which has the latest recipes that guarantee the same taste every time. These machines will be on a centralized network, capable of carrying out dynamic changes. Top executives believe that scaling these machines will not be very difficult to implement and would bring “real-time traceability”.

As more and more customers are becoming conscious about the quality of their coffee beans by the day, it is also trying to provide transparency by educating them how the cup of coffee they drank this morning made its way from the farm to your local Starbucks. It is moving to give consumers more information on its coffee products using a blockchain system that will track beans from “farm to cup.”

Starbucks’ massive popularity has enabled it to experiment with technology like no other fast-food brand has ever done before. Their ambitious efforts to seamlessly merge food with state-of-the-art technology are commendable. Starbucks provides a very complete customer experience, always leaving customers wanting for more.

Here’s Why Everyone Is Obsessed With Starbucks was originally published in Data Driven Investor on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.