The capabilities of cell phones have exponentially grown over the past few years, permeating to almost all aspects of life. They can be used to call, text, email, video chat, and even shop. Because of their usefulness, a person needs to have their phones on them at all times. Walking around campus, it is evident that people are extremely dependent on their phones. Banks are starting to see this trend as a way to create convenience for their customers. The two things that a person almost always has on them is their cell phone and wallet, so why not try to combine the two: “Customers who don’t want to fumble around in their wallet for their A.T.M. card — or who have misplaced it for the umpteenth time — will soon be able to unlock cash dispensers’ coffers by using their phone”. In a world where convenience dominates consumer behavior, people wil definitely adopt this new withdrawal method. JPMorgan Chase has already started to activate this technology on a few hundred ATM machines in four test cities. Others, like Bank of America and Wells Fargo, plan to introduce card-less options to all their machines by the end of the year.
The technology in the phones that allows them share information wirelessly over a short distance is called near-field communications (N.F.C), which comes in the form of a chip. Other devices such as tablets, computers, and smartwatches also have NFC chips in them; a year from now you may be able to withdraw money using an apple watch. This new way of using ATMs could lead to an elimination of pins, increasing the security for your bank accounts. I have been hearing a lot about NFC technology of late, especially how their applications make life easier; something that is not always the case in the tech world.
The loss of a wallet is an ordeal that most of gone through, especially if you are in need of some cash. The goal of the banks implementing this new technology is not to eradicate the use of credit cards, but to give their customers the choice to use either a card or cell phone. Personally, having lost my debit card a few times, I wish I was able to use my cell phone to withdraw money. Having to wait a week for your new card to come in the mail to take out money can be a massive inconvenience. Within the year we can expect to see most banks adopt this new method of using atms.