A story of the business section of yesterday’s Honolulu Star-Advertiser seems to be an early sign of a seismic shift in consumer banking.
S-A reporter Dave Segal reported yesterday that Bank of Hawaii is removing all of its ATMs from McDonald’s restaurants in Hawaii and Guam.
According to the story, the move is in response to changing market conditions.
“Today, consumer preference is trending toward the use of debit cards and mobile phones instead of cash to pay for food and drinks at McDonald’s.”
The 65 machines represent nearly 14 percent of Bankoh’s ATM network. It will still have 404 ATMs systemwide — the most of any local financial institution — after the removals.
The change was spurred by McDonald’s decision to modernize its restaurants and the incorporation of point-of-sale technology to accept electronic payments.
The story quotes senior executive in charge of “digital channels”:
“An important technological shift is happening,” Oyadomari said. “The role of the ATM as only a cash dispenser has changed to now include the ability to scan deposited checks, count bills of deposited cash and communicate with your mobile phone. As the role of the ATM continues to change, we’ll continue to assess where customers would find the most value in having an ATM.”
So banks themselves are having to adapt their services, and businesses also have to keep up with the increasing importance of digital phone technologies and software advances.
Where is this heading? How will it affect banks more generally? Merchants? Let’s hear your thoughts.