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Talking ATMs installed in Massachusetts

March, 2001 -- Over 1400 "talking ATMs" in New York and New England are being installed by Fleet Bank to improve access for its visually-impaired customers throughout the New York and New England region, according to information from Fleet and the Boston-based Disability Law Center.

More than 16 Fleet talking ATMs are already installed and operating in Massachusetts. The total of talking ATMs, which provide audio instructions over a headset, will increase to more than 150 throughout Massachusetts, New Hampshire and the metropolitan New York area by the end of the year. Over the next two years, Fleet will complete the installation of 1,420 talking ATMs throughout its Northeast retail service area, from Maine to Pennsylvania.

Fleet's Talking ATMs are equipped with universal audio jacks, and the bank will provide listening devices to persons with vision impairments through which they can receive private audio instructions for transactions typically displayed on the ATM screen for cash withdrawals, balance inquiries, transfers & payments and deposits.

Fleet says it is "upgrading existing ATMs" that have been developed by leading ATM manufacturers NCR Corporation and Diebold Corporation. Both companies' ATMs will be included in the pilot phase.

Both NCR and Diebold are actively involved in the development of ATMs that are voice-guided and/or use other adaptive technologies.

Over 1 million Americans are legally blind; another 12 million Americans experience some form of irreversible visual impairment. As many as 75,000 Americans become blind each year.

List of Fleet Talking ATM machines

Media contacts Disability Law Center Managing Attorney Stanley J. Eichner (617) 723-8455;

For Fleet: Alison Gibbs (617) 434-2489


For more background or sources on this topic, contact Deputy Director William Stothers at 619-232-2727 X104 (cellphone 619-886-2727) or by email at










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The Electronic Curb Cut

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