Avivah Litan

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Avivah Litan
VP Distinguished Analyst
12 years at Gartner
30 years IT industry

Avivah Litan is a Vice President and Distinguished Analyst in Gartner Research. Her area of expertise includes financial fraud, authentication, access management, identity proofing, identity theft, fraud detection and prevention applications…Read Full Bio

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Square and Starbucks will move mobile U.S. payments

by Avivah Litan  |  August 8, 2012  |  5 Comments

I don’t get very excited by much news anymore but the Square/Starbucks announcement definitely got my adrenaline moving – even more than a couple shots of expresso.

Square finally found a large enough payment acceptor – Starbucks – to ensure its mobile wallet will be on millions of American coffee drinkers’ smartphones. After all it will be cool for Starbucks to recognize we are in the store, and all we have to do is give our name at the cash register for the payment to be processed.

Plus Starbucks will save considerable money in credit card processing fees using Square and together, these companies will eventually move many consumers over to prepaid accounts (Starbucks or others) and other alternative and less costly payment instruments, for example direct bank (ACH) payments.

This announcement is significant – we finally have a killer app for a mobile wallet and we finally have strong mobile payment competitors taking on the legacy credit card payment networks. Just what free market competition is supposed to encourage.

I’m personally very psyched.


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