The NCR Corporation has introduced a concept automated teller machine (ATM) that can be operated by a mobile phone or personal digital assistant (PDA).
Demonstrated at the Marriott Marquis in Times Square, New York, NCR’s screenless, keyless ATM of the future is built on infrared and Bluetooth technologies.
According to a report issued by Cahner’s In-Stat Group, more than 1.3 billion wireless data users are expected worldwide by 2004. Currently, there are more than 118 million US cellular phone users, while six percent of all US households already own a PDA.
The egg-shaped Freedom ATM works without a screen, keyboard or card. Instead, cash withdrawal requests can be typed into a PDA or mobile phone at home or the office.
Consumers then walk up to the ATM, enter a security pin on the mobile handset, and point the handset at the ATM to withdraw cash.
According to NCR the Freedom concept could do more than dispense cash.
Travel or theatre tickets could be ordered via the handheld device and later picked up at the ATM when withdrawing money.
The Freedom concept is also compatible with broadband mobile connections so data such as MP3 files could be downloaded while collecting concert tickets.
‘Advances in Bluetooth and 3G will bring new services through mobile devices,’ said Tim Wiggins, spokesperson for NCR’s Advanced Concept Lab in Dundee, Scotland. ‘ATMs could enhance these broadband services by dispensing associated physical items.
‘For example, local area maps can be downloaded on your mobile device and dispensed through the nearby ATM. For high-traffic visitors’ areas, like Times Square, that could be phenomenal.’