ATM software is evolving rapidly, with continual advancements in hardware, communication, and security technologies.
ATM technology innovation
In recent years, innovation drivers have centered on the following areas:
ATM dispensing methods
While it has always been possible to program an ATM to hand over a range of items, a new focus has been placed on:
- Increasingly sophisticated cash deposit methods, both note and coin, in some cases to meet legislative requirements
- Cash recyclers that allow cash deposited to be recycled and dispensed to subsequent customers (the development and release of the first multivendor cash recycling ATM application was a KAL “world first”)
- The ability to dispense novelties (such as gold and even jewellery!)
ATM screens and, in particular, touch screen technology, video and the use of other interactivity for customers used to 3G phones and tablets who want the same functionality from their bank ATM.
ATM card reading and its alternatives - mobile phone bank applications are a major focus, but so is new biometric security technology such as Magneprint, Finger Vein Recognition, and the move from magstripe to EMV in the States.
ATM vault protection, including locks to ensure that access is only given to the right people, delays in opening times to thwart criminals and dye to mark notes when vault tampering occurs.
The need for continual improvement in the security of customer identity is leading the industry to look into new methods, such as mobile phone apps or strengthening existing technologies like EPP and RKL, that will remove the need for card readers.
Technology that allows an administrator to oversee an ATM network and identify problems ahead of time; predictive maintenance is a key area giving insight into issues before they occur and saving time and money.
This is particularly relevant in the current market where banks are running an ATM network comprising multiple hardware types as a result of mergers, acquisitions or consolidation. With a uniform ATM software interface there are huge cost advantages from the enhanced management flexibility and greater potential for innovation.
Wider ATM technology considerations
External issues also have an effect on ATM technology development
- ATM legislative requirements - for example, regarding EU legislation in relation to ATM counterfeit note handling.
- ATM accessibility – different countries and regions may have their own specific requirements including touch screen, Braille access and voice.
- ATM branding – reaching customers with a consistent ATM presence and range of banking services
- RTMs – Retail Teller Machines that deliver the same range of banking services as ATMs, but hold no cash and are only one tenth of the cost to operate.