Cash, Charge, or Cellphone: 270 Jamba Juice Locations to Test Google Wallet
Hey, you're an on-the-go kinda person, right? So much so that you enjoy "eating" your meal in the form of a smoothie you buy at a store. You're so on-the-go that taking those bills or that plastic card out of your wallet is too much work, so you have armed your smartphone with Google Wallet. Smoothie seller Jamba Juice has announced they will now be testing the program in 270 of their locations in Chicago, Los Angeles, New York City, San Francisco and Washington D.C.
Okay, so not all of us get to play with how we pay. Google Wallet, introduced in September, is exclusive to a small segment of the consumer market. How small? Err, sorry Apple and BlackBerry users (and most everyone else), it's only Sprint's Samsung Nexus S 4G smartphone that supports the app, and the app only works for Citibank-issued MasterCards with PayPass and Google Prepaid Card accounts. Um, and that's how many of us? 57? 149?
Jamba Juice thinks they are onto something here by doing the test, after putting in "new card-reader hardware and upgraded POS software," just to handle the Google Wallet, according to Nation's Restaurant News. The chain's vice president of information technology, Robert Notte, says their decision was fueled in part by "the belief that this industry is moving quickly towards mobile commerce."
So far, Google Wallet has concentrated their test efforts in NY and SF (Macy's, The Container Store, Toys R Us, Walgreens, and OfficeMax are among the dozen or so retailers taking part). Fast food's Jack In the Box has announced they'll test it, too, in the Bay Area and Los Angeles.
Is paying with your smartphone the next big thing for consumers? Or does the whole idea seem a little too risky?