I’ve had my Apple iPod Touch for a few months now and I’ve been very happy with the device. With Apple’s $20 software update, I can now read my e-mail, get a weather report, check the stock market, and view the latest you-tube video quickly and easily almost any place that has a wireless internet connection.
The problem for me has been that it Did Not Work at Starbucks. Unless I paid an exorbitant amount for their T-mobile wireless access, I was out of luck. This all changed a month ago as most of our local Starbucks are now offering 2 free hours of Wi-Fi service daily if you register your Starbucks card.
This free service now means that I can stop by for a coffee and check my e-mail and get a weather report while waiting in line. If I am meeting a group, the wide screen web browser on the iTouch is available to browse the internet and have the ability to e-mail other members of the team.
The iTouch allows me to take meeting notes quickly and easily and then e-mail them to myself for later printing at the office. This feature easily pays for the iTouch in convenience alone. One of the other cool features is the map widget which pulls up Google maps for directions and traffic information. The expanding touch interface allows me to zoom into the map quickly and easily. (You can read my reviews of all the new productivity applications here)
Starbucks has taken this relationship with Apple a step further and is offering an interface with the built-in iTunes application and the songs being played in the Starbucks store. If you like the song being played just touch the iTunes button on your iTouch and you’ll see the currently playing song listed automatically. You can easily purchase the song from the iTunes store and be able to take the song with you… cool!
I think Starbucks has hit a home run by offering free internet access. There are over 10 Starbucks in the area that I live and I’ll be a much more frequent guest now. Not only will my iTouch find a lot of use, but my laptop as well.
Registering your Starbucks card online only takes a minute and you’ll be up and running. And registering the card brings other free benefits too. Check out their new customer focused web site where you can let them know what you want in your in-store experience.