Starbucks’ Mobile Payment Technology Gets Patent Holder Steamed

Maxim Integrated, a California semiconductor company, filed a patent infringement suit against Starbucks in the U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Texas alleging the Starbucks Card Mobile, Starbucks for iPhone and Starbucks for Android applications infringed upon four of Maxim Integrated’s patents. The patents in question describe mobile payment methods “for enabling a user to fill a portable module with a cash equivalent and to spend the cash equivalent at a variety of locations” and as an “electronic module [that] is capable of passing information back and forth between a service provider’s equipment via a secure, encrypted technique so that money and other valuable data can be securely passed electronically.”

Starbucks isn’t the only recipient of the mobile payment app infringement claim. Maxim Integrated also filed similar patent infringement suits against Expedia Inc. and Capital One Financial Group. According to,

The activities described in the patents seem to encompass activities inherent to any mobile payments operation. Moreover, Maxim is asserting them across different platforms. In its complaints, it singles out apps like “Expedia Hotels for Android” and “Capital One Mobile Banking for Android” in addition to iPhone and iPad apps. (more…)