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Nationwide deploys NCR software to improve ATM access for visually impaired

9th October 2013 Print

Nationwide Building Society and NCR Corporation have announced that Nationwide is deploying NCR's Voice Guidance text-to-voice capabilities to improve access at ATMs for visually impaired customers.

The innovative project is in partnership with Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) and part of a wider software update for Nationwide's ATMs in the UK that is based on NCR APTRATM software.
Nationwide will roll-out a pilot of the Voice Guidance solution to 50 Nationwide branches in Q4 2013. 75 per cent percentage of Nationwide's 1,300 branch ATMs will have the functionality by the end of February 2014.
Chris Shott, Head of Property & Corporate Services at Nationwide Building Society, said: "As part of our continuing efforts to improve our service, we must ensure that the consumer experience continues to be enhanced for all customers. This includes the large number of visually impaired customers who bank with Nationwide. To achieve this, we have partnered closely with the RNIB and NCR to scope out what is required. We are proud of this innovative software-based solution that will soon be rolled out across most Nationwide branch ATMs in the U.K."
The upgrade, driven by Nationwide, is in partnership with NCR and aligned with RNIB's Make Money Talk campaign. Originally launched in 2011, RNIB's campaign highlighted how only 11 per cent of the 2 million people with sight loss in the UK used ATMs without assistance compared to 80 per cent of the general public. RNIB has actively encouraged major UK banks to make Britain's ATM network accessible to blind and partially sighted people.
Fazilet Hadi, RNIB's group director of Inclusive Society said: "We are delighted that Nationwide has worked with NCR to begin rolling out speech enabled ATMs, benefiting thousands of people with sight loss. We believe all banks in the UK should provide cash machines with audio facilities for their blind and partially sighted customers."
Nationwide is deploying NCR APTRATM Advance NDC. It includes Voice Guidance text-to-voice capabilities and is the world's most popular self-service ATM software for NDC (NCR Direct Connect) host environments. Based on Microsoft Windows®, it enables retail banks to drive a single application across multiple vendors' hardware, providing many transactions ‘out-of-the-box' and a platform for the rapid deployment of new ATM software functionality.
"High quality, interactive experiences for consumers at financial institutions are fundamental to the long-term success of those institutions. This includes provision of services for customers who are visually impaired," said Rachel Nash, director of Financial Services at NCR U.K. "At NCR we are committed to enabling this type of inclusiveness, as we believe it is something that all organisations should aspire to. We are proud to be working with the RNIB and financial institutions, such as Nationwide, to define and develop the software, hardware and services required to make it a reality."