|Both Apple's iTunes store and Starbucks' website have begun selling a $30 (Product) RED virtual gift card that offers $15 in credit at each of the two vendors: $15 to spend at Starbucks, and $15 to spend on the iTunes store. Five percent of the purchase price goes to the Global Fund AIDS research foundation. The credit is good for anything purchasable in a Starbucks, or from the company's online store (US only). The iTunes half can be used to buy music, movies, apps, audiobooks, e-books and Mac App Store software.
In addition to the five percent donation from the two companies from the gift card, Starbucks is also making a five-cent donation for every beverage sold on December 1, which is World AIDS Day. The Global Fund also combats the problem of malaria and tuberculosis in developing nations as well as AIDS. Apple already sells a number of (Product) RED items, including special versions of its most recent iPod products, along with special red Smart Covers and Smart Cases for the iPad and a bumper protector for the iPhone.
Apple notes that the (Product) RED has generated more than $190 million ($50 million of it from Apple alone) for the Global Fund. Currently the fund is focused on providing resources to combat HIV infection in newborns in Africa, hoping to reduce the rate down to zero by 2015 -- currently some 900 babies per day are born with the HIV virus. This marks the fifth year of collaboration with Starbucks, and over six years with Apple. The (Product) RED concept was initially created by U2 frontman Bono along with Bobby Shriver, though neither run the privately-held company now.