While I was writing this post I came across this entry on Banking 4 Tomorrow and it is a good overview of the types of motivations that are happening in the banking industry and how they happened in several other industries that didn’t want to change during technology disruption.
My thesis is that my smart phone should be able to do everything that an ATM does. Here is the list of options I have at a Wells Fargo ATM that I can also do on my smart phone.
- Check my balance
- Deposit a check
- View a statement
- Pay Bill
- Give me a receipt
The one missing task is Deposit or Withdraw Cash. Since my phone can’t print $20 bills this ability to move physical cash around is the technology gap.* This could be easily solved if PayNearMe functionality was built into my phone, then I would never need an ATM again. At $2-3.50 a transaction it seems like somebody (maybe 7-Eleven) has some margins to offer the service. Ideally I could deposit or withdraw cash from a Pay Near Me partner just like I was buying an item on Amazon.
The biggest bonus would be that banks would get to stop advertising great mobile ATM finders and build something more innovative because I would never bother using an ATM again.
* There is a Buying stamps at Wells Fargo that ATM is a non-standard service that Wells offers.