You might be used to visiting your local bank, speaking with a teller and paying a few bills. But what if in the next five years you performed all these actions without setting foot inside a bank? And what if you were able to not just perform typical banking activities — withdraw money, transfer money, deposit a check, etc. — but also purchase a plane ticket while you were there? Although this sounds like something out of a sci-fi movie, it might be your reality come 2020.
Evolving ATM technology and banking trends might leave you with a significantly different banking experience in the future. Here are six banking technologies you shouldn’t be surprised to see in the next five years.
1. Blockchain Technology
Blockchain technology, which Investopedia says “is seen as the main technological innovation of Bitcoin” and “is like a full history of banking transactions,” could become popular.
In 2014, about 100 financial technology experts attended the Financial News and WSJD inaugural Fintech Conference in London. At the conference, they were split up into groups and asked to design the bank of 2020.
According to The Wall Street Journal, the group hypothesized that blockchain technology will be used “to distribute, verify and record a wide-range of financial services.” This will result in a less-centralized financial system while adding some risks and eliminating others.
2. Upgraded ATMs
Instead of using an ATM to deposit checks, withdraw money, transfer funds or check balances, you might be using it to purchase a ticket for your next vacation. CNBC reports future ATMs might allow you to buy plane tickets, pay your bills, sign up for a mortgage, speak to a teller and possibly more.
In fact, you might have already noticed some technological upgrades if you’ve used an ATM recently. According to CNBC, ATMs at some banks already allow users to deposit cash, get change and purchase prepaid cards.
3. More Kiosks
If you hate having to withdraw at least $20 every time you need a few dollars, or you’re always concerned for your safety when you visit an ATM, new banking technology might erase all of that frustration. The New York Times reported in 2014 that JPMorgan Chase has “reimagined” at least 300 of its banks branches. The branches boast kiosks, which offers more functions than ATMs. Some of the features include:
- Flat screens
- More precise withdrawals
- Video screens that allow you to see people approaching
And if you live in an area that is prone to natural disasters, kiosks might become extremely useful tools during an emergency. As of last year, JPMorgan executives were developing portable kiosks powered by generators, reports the New York Times. This would seemingly make them ideal for situations in which there might be power outages or other issues that would otherwise restrict your ability to get cash.
4. Apple Store-Style Experience
If you enjoy visiting your local Apple Store, you might enjoy visiting your bank in the near future. According to The New York Times, banks such as Bank of America and Citigroup are aiming for their branches to be more like an Apple Store, in which customers are served by workers who have tablets and other devices.
5. Robot Advisers
Does your friend like to spend half of his paycheck on lottery tickets? In the future, you might have help convincing him to rethink his spending habits. According to the Wall Street Journal, the groups at the London conference also predicted that robot advisers, or automated Know Your Customer and Suitability Tools, will let customers know what they’re sacrificing their future savings for unnecessary purchases.
6. Experience Zones
Diebold, a financial self-service, security and services corporation, is developing “a new type of branch” that has three different “experience zones,” reported CNBC in December 2014. Think of these zones as hybrids between a traditional banking experience and a completely technological one.
“Experience zones” have ATMs that allow customers to enter their desired withdrawal amount just by using their phones so they can receive the cash instantly after reaching the machine. Also, a customer can interact with an avatar to complete routine banking activities, such as transferring money. In the “experience zones,” customers also have the ability to communicate with someone remotely to apply for loans and more.
With ATMs and kiosks set to provide additional functions and the ability to connect remotely when you need the services of a teller, it appears that face-to-face banking transactions might become increasingly rare in the coming years. With banking technology continuing to improve year after year, the bank of the future might be arriving sooner than you think.
From GoBankingRates.com: 6 banking technologies you’ll see in the next 5 years