Despite the rise in other new technologies such as online and mobile banking, the ATM remains popular 50 years on. Today marks that 50 years since the first Automated Teller Machine (ATM) was unveiled at a Barclays branch in Enfield, London. The ATM brought convenience to many people as they didn’t have to wait in a line in order to withdraw some cash.
ATMs are a part of the daily lives of so many people out there today, the BBC reports that there are over 70,000 cash machines in the UK and 176 million cards that can be used to withdraw cash at times since 94% of adults use ATMs.
The original ATM was the brainchild of John Shepherd-Barron, who was commissioned by Barclays to create six cash dispensers, the first of which was installed at Enfield.
In countries where ATMs are widely used, they will continue to be developed to allow more people to do the transaction that they don’t necessarily need a bank teller’s assistance. Surely at some point, people will stop using ATMs, look at Sweden, one of Europe’s largest countries, has transitioned to an almost cashless economy. Literally cashless. The businesses there even frown upon receiving cash and have the right to refuse the money.
Nonetheless, the ATM still kicks ass when you need cash at 2 AM. Happy Birthday old friend! Here is to 50 more! (let's hope)