Want a doughnut? There's an app for that

Dunkin' Brands announces its first mobile app, one that lets customers pay by phone and text gift certificates.

By Kim Peterson Aug 16, 2012 12:24PM
Dunkin' Brands (DNKN) is launching an app that lets customers pay with phones using their Dunkin' Donuts cards.

You can also use the app to send a virtual Dunkin' gift card to your friends through email, text or Facebook. And if you really want to look -- but why would you? -- the app has nutritional information about the menu items.

"I think this is going to get a lot of play," Nigel Travis, the CEO of Dunkin' Brands, tells CNBC in the following interview.

Post continues below.
In order to pay by phone, customers need to load money onto a Dunkin' Donuts card, even if it's just a virtual card purchased online. When ordering, customers open the app on their phone and show the card information to the cashier for scanning.

Rival Starbucks (SBUX) has allowed mobile payments for quite some time and processes a million mobile transactions a week, The New York Times reports. Last week, Starbucks announced a partnership with Square, a startup focused in this area. Eventually, the newspaper reports, you'll be able to order at Starbucks just by telling the cashier your name and your credit card will be charged.

Dunkin' Brands hopes to open more than 600 stores globally this year, Travis says in the interview. The company has done well in the economic downturn, and over the past year its shares saw a strong climb from $25 to top $36 in June. Shares have settled back down since then and were trading Thursday up less than 1% to $30.98.

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Aug 16, 2012 2:58PM
I don't go to Dunkin Donuts anymore - since they changed their stores, the people in there aren't nearly as friendly as they used to be!  In fact, the last time we went into one, they were downright RUDE.  Too many options of where to spend your $ without patronizing buttheads!
Aug 16, 2012 4:18PM
Best doughnuts EVER were Helms Doughnuts. When I was a kid they use to drive down the streets like an ice cream man... best chocolate covered doughnuts in the WORLD! Miss them.
Aug 16, 2012 4:40PM

I'm irritated by the verb form of the word 'gift' which is derived from the proper word 'give', as in a thing which is given.  I'll never 'gift' anything to anyone, I'll GIVE it to them as a gift.  I may be splitting hairs, but it just seems LAME to me.


About the doughnuts: nah, I'll pass.  Dunkin' Doughnuts just isn't all that great IMHO, and the service there is invariably poor these days.  And the prices add grief to what has already been a poor experience.

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