From Mobile Payments Today:
For every new technology there are always observers and analysts who enjoy playing the role of skeptic. There’s apparently money to be made in catering to the preconceived notions of the incumbents. As the publisher of Mobile Payments Today and ATM Marketplace, as well as co-founder of ATMIA, Tom Harper could easily play the role of naysayer. After all, Harper has seen plenty of ATM innovations debut to great fanfare and then quietly fade away.
But Harper has also seen innovations achieve such success and widespread adoption that, today, they seem commonplace. In the case of the convergence of ATMs and mobile devices, Harper is firmly on the side of those who believe the future lies with a combination of the technologies. He’s closely watched the emergence of the technology since first hearing about it some years ago.
“I was on the beach during a reception at an ATMIA event, talking to an R&D guy at one of the major manufacturers,” Harper said. “He told me the next big thing in ATMs was interactivity with mobile devices. It may not have happened in the time frame he envisioned, but it’s certainly becoming a reality now.”
It’s become enough of a reality that, last fall, Harper judged it was time to launch an executive level event around the opportunities and challenges that ATM-mobile convergence presents to the ATM industry — and the financial services industry at large.
As we have noted in several recent Mercator Advisory Group reports, the convergence of mobile and ATM offers new ways for customers and members to bank when and where they want, in a manner desirable to them. Examples include the pre-staging of ATM transactions via mobile devices and enabling person-to-person (P2P) transfers. These capabilities offer new opportunities to reach out to banking customers, as well as those who are unbanked or underbanked.
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