Thirsty for Starbucks? Send a text message

Starbucks has launched a new cell phone-based service that lets you locate the nearest store via text message.

Caroline McCarthy Former Staff writer, CNET News
Caroline McCarthy, a CNET News staff writer, is a downtown Manhattanite happily addicted to social-media tools and restaurant blogs. Her pre-CNET resume includes interning at an IT security firm and brewing cappuccinos.
Caroline McCarthy

Coffee behemoth Starbucks has launched a new cell phone-based service that lets you efficiently locate the nearest store and feed your addiction get your caffeine buzz on. Starting today, when you send a text message with the ZIP code of your location to the number "MYSBUX" (697289), you'll receive another text with the addresses of the three nearest Starbucks locations. It won't cost you anything besides your cell phone plan's normal texting fees.

Only problem is, if you're wandering around in an unfamiliar city, you might not have any clue as to the exact ZIP code of where you're standing--unless your phone or car is GPS-equipped, and then you'd likely have some kind of satellite-based directory feature at your fingertips anyway. Starbucks has, however, also launched a mobile version of its Web site so Web-enabled mobile phones can access maps and directions. Plus, the company has asserted that it has now provided store location data to the mapping services that are used by in-car GPS units.

Then again, the average American city now has a Starbucks on about every third block, so in truth, you probably don't need any kind of gadgetry to find one.