Recent Marquette graduate Chris Hallberg has invented an RFID-enabled coffee mug that allows patrons of coffee shops to pay for their drinks without pulling out their wallets.
The smug mug is built by sonically welding an RFID tag onto a coffee mug. A smug mug owner can put money on the chip, and a payment transaction is made by simply waving the mug in front of a reader.
Hallberg sold the idea to Milwaukee-area coffee chain Stone Creek Coffee, who plans to have smug mugs in stores next year at a price of $15 with $5 already on the chip.
The smug mug system saves time as well as trees. The RFID mugs allow Stone Creek Coffee to go green by doing away with paper cups.
Recently Hallberg took the smug mug to a coffee trade show in Seattle, and had reportedly piqued the interest of several independent chains.