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Digital Transformation

Starbucks taps Alibaba's Tmall Genie for voice ordering

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By Taruka Srivastav | Reporter

September 19, 2019 | 3 min read

Starbucks has integrated voice ordering and delivery capabilities within Alibaba’s smart speaker, Tmall Genie.

The customers will now be able to order Starbucks beverages and food by using their voice for delivery within 30 minutes. Starbucks will further leverage Alibaba’s on-demand food delivery platform, Ele.me, the voice ordering capabilities to expand its digital portfolio.

Starbucks taps Alibaba's Tmall Genie for voice ordering

Starbucks taps Alibaba's Tmall Genie for voice ordering

Starbucks is continuing with its 'digital aggression' by previously driving business transformation with the introduction of store pre-visit order app and by redefining its creative brand expression with a public website.

According to Alibaba, this move is the latest in a long-standing partnership on omnichannel retail between the two businesses. Last year, Starbucks created a unified virtual store in China via Alibaba technology and, the two brands announced a collaboration around a delivery service in China via Ele.me. Alibaba is also behind a lot of the technology in place in China’s flagship Starbucks Roastery interactive store in Shanghai.

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Miffy Chen, general manager at Alibaba A.I. Labs which leads the development of Tmall Genie, said: “Earlier this year, we launched food order and delivery service through Ele.me in response to our users’ needs for on-demand local services. We’re excited to introduce an even more diverse and enriched experience on our platform through Starbucks voice ordering and provide a direct benefit to Chinese consumers within their daily routine.”

Molly Liu, vice president and general manager, Digital Ventures, Starbucks China said: “We are focused on ensuring that Starbucks voice ordering is truly personal, and we look forward to offering our customers more convenient moments and new opportunities to engage with Starbucks on a single integrated platform as they move throughout the day.”

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