Bank of America is adding a new feature to its automated teller machines: actual human tellers.
The company announced Thursday morning that it will start rolling out new ATMs with Teller Assist, a feature that allows customers to live video chat with a remote teller. Customers using the new ATMs will be able to call the remote teller for services that a machine is unable to provide. That includes cashing checks for their exact amount (including change) and getting a withdrawal in smaller denominations than the usual $20 bills. Bank of America is also planning to offer the option of paying your credit card bill from the ATM, as well as splitting a deposit across multiple accounts.
The feature, available in both English and Spanish, will be most useful for customers using ATMs during hours when the bank is closed. That said, video chat will be available from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. on weekdays and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekends, which means that you can also use it when the bank is open and you don't feel like waiting in line to speak with a teller. And of course, it will also be a big help for customers using ATMs that aren't attached to a bank -- the company says that the new feature will be available at drive-up locations and standalone ATMs.
The program is starting at a single Bank of America location in Boston, but will roll out at other locations across America over the course of the year.
Matt Brownell is the consumer and retail reporter for DailyFinance. You can reach him at Matt.Brownell@teamaol.com, and follow him on Twitter at @Brownellorama.