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Starbucks and Polygon recently announced a partnership with the polygon network that will bring “exclusive NFT experiences” to current and future coffee customers. Though Starbucks their Web3 ambitions back in May you would be forgiven for forgetting about it. If you did, I will be breaking down everything you need to know about Starbucks Selling NFTs on Polygon.
What is the Polygon and Starbucks Partnership?
On September 12th, the Polygon Team announced on their blog the Starbucks Adoption of the Polygon Network for their upcoming “Starbucks Odyssey Web 3 Experience.”
Starbucks believes that polygon “aligns with our sustainability aspirations and commitments” meaning they appreciate the low-cost and carbon-neutral network Polygon provides to help create their first digital community.
Using the Polygon PoS (point of sale) system, Starbucks plans on bringing new ways for their customers to interact with the brand through a custom Web3 Loyalty program called “Starbucks Odyssey.”
Starbucks claims the program offers members new ways to unlock immersive coffee experiences (no word on what that means yet), “from unique merchandise and artist collaborations and invitations to exclusive events.”
Currently, all we really know about the partnership is Starbucks is planning on using the Polygon network to distribute their NFT collections.
What is Polygon?
Polygon is a new web 3 cryptocurrency that was created by the Polygon Foundation. The goal of the Polygon Foundation is to create a new digital currency that can be used for everyday transactions.
Polygon is a Layer 2 Blockchain ( or a blockchain that assists another blockchain network) to help improve the existing technology. Polygon is not necessarily changing the Ethereum blockchain it runs on, but attempts to improve the transaction speed and reduce the transaction prices to make the original technology more accessible.
The name of the coin comes from the shape of a polygon, which is made up of three or more lines connected at their endpoints and closed in a loop. The logo for Polygon is also in this shape.
Polygon has been ranked as one of the top crypto currencies to invest in since 2019.
Why is Starbucks Using Polygon?
Polygon is a great way to introduce the complex processes of blockchain to a more scalable environment. Ethereum, the most popular blockchain technology behind bitcoin, is infamous for having high processing (or gas) fees.
High fees make it hard for the average person to get into crypto if they cannot afford to pay the fees associated with using the network. That’s where Polygon becomes useful for Starbucks to launch their new Web 3 rewards program, Odyssey.
Starbucks most likely is using polygon because it’s very popular and has relatively low fees associated with using the platform. Starbucks needs to keep their customers in mind when launching a web3 project and if the price is too high, the venture will fail.
Is it Good Starbucks is Using Polygon for Cryptocurrency?
Starbucks introducing an NFT partnership is great for Web3 because it helps to normalize the use, sale, distribution and collection of NFTs. Starbucks is indeed a major multinational company that helps push the future of NFT’s way further than Coinbase ever could.
Starbucks using NFT’s in their rewards program is a great demonstration of how to effectively use NFT’s to display value that might not be inherently artistic or monetary in nature.
NFT’s have gotten a bad rap but really, an NFT is just a validation certificate of an event. Collectors and art enthusiasts have collected art as historic validation certificates for centuries before NFT’s and now Starbucks is giving the average person an entry point to get exclusive rewards that certify “I was here!”
Could the Polygon Network Integration Make NFTs more Popular?
Web3 has been struggling in the last few years to show its value. Many people have turned their noses up at NFTs after opportunists and celebrities used NFTs for nefarious purposes.
In the public eye, NFTs are just a source of scamming opportunists that take advantage of others.
And like Twitter user Aylo mentioned on Twitter, this is a significant step forward for Web3 adoption because a company of that size integrating NFTs at scale shows other businesses they can lead the way towards a more decentralized internet.
I’m pretty sure Starbucks are one of the first companies of that size to integrate NFTs with a loyalty program at scale.
It’s significant because there are many decision makers at corporations that like to follow, rather than lead.
They can now follow Starbucks.
— Aylo (@alpha_pls) September 12, 2022
Is the Polygon + Starbucks Partnership just hype?
There are serious concerns to be aware of when any major company takes a big stake in a big network. Why?
The Starbucks announcement ultimately a very small announcement. We have no idea how the NFT marketplace starbucks implements will be used. We have no idea how “scarce” the projects they release will be.
Additionally, this is still a beta anouncement. Like many tech bloggers are fond of saying, “You buy the product for the software it has today, not in hopes the software will improve in the future.”
Unfortunately, we don’t know what “coffee based experiences” starbucks has up its sleeve. If the project is slated for a subtle release and quiet marketing, you can expect very small adoption numbers.
Could Starbucks NFTs Ruin the Polygon Network Reputation?
When big company partners with a tech brand, they expect that brand to bring customers. To be fair to Starbucks, this will be the first time many polygon consumers have had anything to use their MATIC for besides other transaction types in web3 spaces.
But Starbucks IS adopting Polygon to increase overall numbers. They know they have a solid grasp of their current demographic, but every corporation is never satisfied. They need more customers and if an executive at Starbucks decides a dip in sales is due to Polygon implementation, we might be looking at a very short adoption cycle.
That’s really bad for the future of web3. The worst thing that could happen to metaverse projects or Web3 adoption is being seen as a fad that goes out of style after a hard recession. Polygon and Ethereum have proven very versatile but I’m not sure they could handle a massive corporate failure.
What do you think? Tweet me your thoughts @Metarketing
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