Cardtronics Inc., the world’s largest retail ATM owner, announced the establishment of the Cardtronics Accessibility Center of Excellence. The Center of Excellence, whose mission is to deliver an industry-leading voice-guided user experience at Cardtronics-supported ATMs, is part of a multi-year agreement by and among the company; the National Federation of the Blind (NFB), the nation’s oldest and largest organization of the blind; and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The agreement resolves class-action litigation concerning the accessibility of Cardtronics’ fleet of ATMs to blind consumers and is subject to the approval of members of the class and the court.
In collaboration with the NFB, Cardtronics will develop enhanced voice guidance software that will provide a fully accessible and superior user experience for blind customers at its ATMs. Within the Center of Excellence, voice guidance capabilities will be incorporated into new ATM technologies, helping to ensure that future ATM innovation is also fully accessible to blind users.
Under the terms of the agreement, Cardtronics will:
- Establish a process for producing NFB-approved voice guidance software for its ATMs;
- Initiate an advanced, in-the-field quality assurance program that will review tens of thousands of ATMs annually; and
- Research and develop technologies that assist blind users with financial services delivered through the ATM channel.
“Cardtronics is proud to work in collaboration with the National Federation of the Blind and intends to be at the forefront of providing convenient cash access to blind people,” said Cardtronics CEO Steve Rathgaber. “We plan to lead the industry to a higher level of accessibility through the efforts of the Center of Excellence.”
“We appreciate that the leadership team at Cardtronics recognizes that the blind deserve the same convenient access to cash and banking services that sighted people enjoy,” said Mark Riccobono, President of the National Federation of the Blind. “By working with Cardtronics in creating the Center of Excellence, we are together striving to raise the quality of access for blind users to financial transactions and other services provided by ATM technology.”