The all-pervasive ATM (automated teller machine) has turned fifty this year. John Shepherd-Barron came up with the concept of automatic cash dispenser after becoming frustrated at not being able to access his own money outside banking hours. He went on to install the world’s first ATM at Barclays Bank in 1967.
Initially, ATMs took in coded cheques, and exchanged them for cash. The idea of a PIN stored on the card was developed by the British engineer John Rose in 1965. The modern, networked ATM was invented in Dallas, Texas, by Don Wetzel in 1968.
HSBC introduced the first ATM in India in 1987.
In the history of banking, the ATM has been one of the most ‘impactful’ innovations touching the life of the common man. Although it looks normal today, this device changed the way the customer uses cash prior to its availability, and also paved the way for the on-demand economy. In developing markets, these machines serve populations previously excluded from the financial system, often in remote locations.
innovation and impact
The early ATMs addressed the specific customer problems of restrictive banking hours, and ability to get cash anywhere. Further evolution brought in major change in retail banking service—transforming many functions of teller/customer, to machine/customer interface. This is considered a forerunner to today’s online/mobile-based services.
ATMs showed for the first time tha