By MyBankTracker  Updated on Wed May 21, 2014

Image-scanning, Envelope-free ATMs Provide Unparalleled Banking Convenience

 

It was in 2002 when Wells Fargo Banks rolled out the first models of image-scanning, envelope-free ATMs. For Bank of America, 2006 was when it started to offer this service. JP Morgan Chase is also currently in the process of installing these cutting-edge technology ATMs, as are some smaller banks such as the Westbound Bank, an 18-month old Houston-based bank.

Both huge and small banks are gearing up to offer this value added service to their clients, and give their bottom lines a boost as well. But how exactly do these new ATMs make banking operations a lot easier for both clients and banks?

This relatively new ATM technology does away with the need to stuff cash and check deposits into an envelope first before inserting this into the machine. Instead, the ATM scans the check or the cash bill and produces a printed image of it, which then serves as the deposit receipt.

Aside from the convenience of the whole process, there are other distinct advantages too. First, a check deposit is credited immediately to the depositor’s account even before the physical check is retrieved from the machine. This system also allows the banks to extend the cut off-time for check deposits from 6 pm to 8 pm. Moreover, cash deposits are immediately available instead of (again) waiting for a bank teller to verify the deposit and enter this into the terminal.

On the business side, research has shown that deposits made at envelope-free ATMs brings down the cost of the transaction to just 40 cents, as compared to the $1.70 cost at conventional, old-model ATMs, and $1.40 for deposits made inside the branch.

When these ATMs first started to operate however, depositors had mixed reactions. The main drawbacks at that time were that the transaction process took too slow and some of the ATMs first had trouble scanning certain bills and checks. For Bank of America ATMs in particular, check deposits had to be inserted one at a time, making the process tedious for those who had multiple checks to deposit.

Notwithstanding these technical difficulties, BofA (Bank of America) reveals that since the integration of this technology, ATM deposits have grown by about 50%. Just very recently, BofA depositors also got another welcome enhancement to the envelope-free deposits: the ATM deposit images can now be viewed online. That means even if you lose your copy of the printed deposited receipt, or if you are perhaps poor in organizing and keeping these records, there is still documentation of these transactions and check deposits which can be accessed online.

Wells Fargo currently has 1,450 of these new ATMs up and running, with plans of adding new features to these. At the same time, Bank of America’s long-term plans are to have its 13,500 deposit-taking ATMs eventually shifted to image-reading units. BofA has about 1,000 units currently being converted. JP Morgan Chase is also on the same path, investing in more than a hundred envelope-free ATMs, and particularly the type which can handle multicheck deposits.

Bank customers can either love it or hate it, ignore it or make it work for them. One thing’s for sure though; with the emphasis now on more efficient and cost-effective banking services, image-scanning, envelope-free ATM technology is here to stay.

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Post a Comment

  • Mauricio

    ¿Por qué nadie comenta en su blog?

  • Ryan Adami

    I love it . . . except for one small issue at BofA. (Read second paragraph!)

    I used to deposit checks via ATM with envelopes, and that definitely took more time than the new deposit scanners. I also started depositing cash into the ATM too. In the past I was nervous about “mis-counts”. Now combined with online banking, I don’t think I’ve set foot in a branch for over six months.

    My issue with these new ATM’s is the cash receptacle. As I write this comment, my left middle finger has two red marks from the door abruptly closing on my hand. I guess that greedy machine really wanted my $200 dollars! I had barely put the cash down and the door started to close. The thing that got me was the force behind it. Let me tell you, if I didn’t have the reflexes of a ninja, I might have lost a finger. Hopefully this is an isolated incident!

    “On the business side, research has shown that deposits made at envelope-free ATMs brings down the cost of the transaction to just 40 cents, as compared to the $1.70 cost at conventional, old-model ATMs, and $1.40 for deposits made inside the branch.”

    ^ This is huge for the bottom line! Great for the environment too, saving paper!

    Thanks,
    Ryan Adami
    Follow me on twitter . . .

  • Ljackson21 Student

    about a year and a half ago my right fingers were smashed by the new chase atm. it has changed my lfe. im a hair stylst. my prize asset was destroyed. I blame the makersm

    • Ljackson21 Student

      im in the process of finding a great product liability lawyer. I dont want to band them but get warning labels and better directions

    • Ljackson21 Student

      im in the process of finding a great product liability lawyer. I dont want to band them but get warning labels and better directions