Starbucks will soon be the first national chain to let customers pay with Square's mobile payment application. Square was founded in 2009 by Jack Dorsey, the creator of Twitter. Users of the Square mobile payments app are currently mostly small businesses and individuals, meaning the partnership with Starbucks could significantly raise the company's profile.
The Seattle-based coffee company says it will start accepting payments from Square's app this fall, in addition to the Starbucks payment app it rolled out a year and a half ago. To use either of the programs, customers download the apps, then link a credit or debit card to the account. When it comes time to pay at the register, they open the app and wave their phone in front of the scanner. Starbucks will invest $25 million in Square as part of the deal, and CEO Howard Schultz will join Square's board of directors.