the ATM: an interface redesign (sketch)

Even though ATMs are devices most of us use multiple times a week, if you watch people using them you can see that with each screen refresh the user is putting effort towards parsing the information before them and hesitating before they make their choices.  I believe this is not just because the stakes are high (it is money, after all) but because the nature of ATM interactions are at odds with the typical ATM interfaces:  ATMs require the user to make a quick succession of choices (“Cash? Transfer? Deposit?” followed by “Savings? Checking?”, etc.) and at each juncture, the screen is redrawn, forcing the user to re-orient themselves and study the choices onscreen.  One solution is to use fluid animation to transition from state to state, but here I’m proposing an interface where all the options remain onscreen and each new choice visually extends out of the previous choice.  The user always knows where they are, every choice to make is already within context, and any choice is easily reversed or changed.  Eventually, the user will be able to visually recognize the pattern for tasks they want to perform, aided by muscle memory.
This interface sketch is based on a Wells Fargo ATM experience, and assumes the user has already logged in. All possible actions remain onscreen, and the user can choose to interrupt any action with another button action.  For this demonstration, a few sample paths of action are indicated by a blue arrow as seen here (on the Get Cash button, for example).
Once a transaction is processing, most  buttons will become disabled, appearing in faded gray.

Try clicking the following buttons:

  • Get Cash
  • Deposit Money
  • $100 Cash (Shortcut)

ATM Demo

Interface Notes


About msallin

Matty Sallin is the founder of Since 1999, Matty has worked to develop consumer products that manage everyday information and media in a satisfying, illuminating, and beautiful way. His professional and academic work has focused on social media, information design and information visualization. His work has appeared in the New York Times, Good Morning America, GQ, American Public Media, Make Magazine, Boing Boing, Engadget, Gizmodo, Coolhunting, ResFest, and others. Matty holds a Master’s degree from New York University’s Interactive Telecommunications Program and a Bachelor’s degree from UC Santa Cruz.
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One Response to the ATM: an interface redesign (sketch)

  1. This is such a great portfolio. Someday, I hope to be as wise an interaction designer as you.

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