Friday, June 26, 2009

The future is now.

Oops, now it's the past. So as I said earlier, I went to my bank today. I found out my bank is more secretive with their policies than the CIA (like I would know). I also got a chance to try out a new ATM.

This 'new' ATM has actually been around a while, however it's been in test cities only--this is the first time I've gotten a chance to use one.

It it envelope-less. You directly feed in cash (stacks of 40 or less at a time) and checks (one at a time) and the ATM scans it. Cash is made available immediately (although isn't technically available till midnight, see link above for more information). Any check made earlier than 8pm on a business day shows up at midnight. This is much better than how it goes inside the bank. Inside, any deposit after 2pm is put on the next day's business, so if I make a deposit at 2:01pm, I can't spend it till 12:01am, 34 hours later. Friday at 2:01 pm? 82 hours till I can get to it, I believe. It goes on Monday's business and shows up the following midnight.

Can't banks get this shit taken care of? Where are the 7 day a week banks (he says, knowing of at least two, though I don't know if they treat Saturday and Sunday as business days)? Where are instantaneous transactions? Or at least 5-minutes-later transactions?

The coolest part of this ATM--I put in a hand-written personal check and then waited for it to ask me the amount. It didn't. It read the check. I know, this might have been completely shocking ten years ago, but today a lot of devices can read handwriting. It's still nice to see progress. Oh, and I also had the option to get a copy of the check printed on my ATM receipt (sans account numbers, as expected).

All in all, a very interesting experience.


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