Soon, micro ATM to deliver cash at doorstep

Pune: Want to withdraw money from an ATM, but it is raining cats and dogs. Well, fret not.

The Centre for Intelligent Systems at the Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU) has developed and patented a handheld micro automated teller machine (ATM), which can be used to place a withdrawal request. Within half-an-hour of the request, the cash would be delivered at the doorstep of the user.

The handheld ATM device, which is the size of a landline telephone instrument, can be carried anywhere and easily installed at workplaces and housing societies.

The centre has received funding of Rs 25 lakh under the Rashtriya Uchchatar Shiksha Abhiyan (RUSA) scheme to develop innovative projects for public use. The centre has also tied up with Persistent Systems and Badve Engineers and acquired three patents for the technology while few more are on their way in order to fully secure the technology from duplication. While the system will be useful for common people, the technology developers said “it will benefit the physically disabled and senior citizens most”.

The system will do a biometric scanning of the citizens in terms of finger print, iris and the Aadhaar card number to verify identity of the person. Also, the person using the device would get a receipt of the transaction, which would be directed to the bank. As soon as the bank is notified, the money would be ready to be delivered to the individual in whose name transaction has happened.

Aditya Abhyankar, dean, Faculty of Technology, Savitribai Phule Pune University and principal investigator of the project, said, “We had to undertake some standard certificates to bring this system in the market which we have already acquired. Certificates for standard, biometrics among others have been complied with. To bring in such a product in the market these certifications are required. Conditions laid down in the Unique Identification Authority of India are also complied with.”

Now, the centre hopes to bring the product in market by next year between May and July when all patents required for the micro-ATM are acquired.

A P Hota, chief executive officer of the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), an umbrella organization for all retail payments system in India, said the system was completely workable and some private banks in the country have already started delivering money at doorstep. “The card payment system, especially if biometric, has to undergo few certifications. If these certifications are complied with, this kind of a system is not impossible. In fact, more and more banks, are now accepting requests for doorstep transaction deliveries,” Hota added.

Anjali Raje, executive director, International Longevity Centre (India), said many of their elderly customers struggle with bank transactions especially when it is cash and this kind of a doorstep delivery will definitely help them.

“It is a innovative as senior citizens are unable to go to the ATM. Some are either not be able to use it or are scared to use it thinking someone might keep a watch on them or follow them. So, this scheme is definitely beneficial to the elderly population. However, the machine should be easily accessible, especially for elderly population, in terms of visibility, ample light and other typical features.”

While banking experts raised questions over the security aspect of by-hand cash delivery, they also said it was not impossible as home delivery utility service for cash transaction is already in place by private players in the finance sector.

HOW DOES IT WORK

The handheld micro ATM, the size of a landline telephone equipment, can be easily carried anywhere

The person can put in the withdrawal request (just the way it is done at conventional ATMs)
The bank official (one who is carrying the device or the one who is deployed at the device site in case it is installed) will verify the credentials of the user via iris or fingerprint scan
A transaction receipt will be generated promptly and the bank will be notified about the transaction
The bank concerned will send the cash via delivery boy who will bring it to the doorstep of the user on whose name the transaction has been