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Double, Double, Tablet, And Trouble? New Alternatives To Consumer Tablets For Credit Unions.

Credit unions seeking to utilize interactive displays are stymied by the technical and practical limitations of consumer-oriented products. Fortunately, a new class of purpose-built interactive displays are arriving to meet the needs or credit unions and financial institutions.

The past decade has seen a massive proliferation of consumer electronics and display devices across the world. Decades of innovation have heightened customer expectations regarding the availability and utilization of electronic display technology throughout their daily life. From the smartphone to the teller desk, displays allow users to interact with the digital world in an intuitive, physical way and can help many people manage the transition to a digital first world.

As technology has evolved, most retail and financial organizations have struggled to implement this technology in ways that advance their business needs and satisfy consumers. Credit unions in particular have been struggling to keep up with member expectations for their in-branch experiences. Security concerns, technological limitations, and costs have hindered credit unions making the transition to the branch of the future, until now.

The Dangers Of Consumer-Oriented Tablets

To engage members throughout their visit, credit unions need to embrace interactive display technology throughout the branch. Interactive display devices like iPads or Samsung Galaxy tablets are increasingly in demand. Customers are familiar with these devices and they are generally well accepted.

However, these devices can present a number of challenges for credit union IT and management teams. These include security concerns (both physical and electronic), the lack of available integrations with existing systems, and uncertainty around the consumer product lifecycle and evolution.

Consumer tablets require wireless connectivity to access applications and member data. However, as noted in a recent The Financial Brand article, utilizing wireless connectivity is often frowned upon by IT departments, which are understandably concerned about the possibility of data being intercepted, according to Forsythe Security. In addition, consumer devices can store member data locally, rather than within your secure systems. Devices like iPads retail for hundreds of dollars and are an easy target for snatch-and-grab thefts including both the device and your member data. This often means that the tablets end up being locked down in kiosks or stands which diminishes their utility, according to The Financial Brand

When it comes to usability, the rapid-fire pace of innovation presents unique business challenges when trying to adapt consumer technology to a business environment. Most consumer devices are not designed with business needs in mind. For example, devices like iPads can require ongoing modification to support the growing web of security measures such as erasing the screen, automated timeouts, and remote device updates or wiping. Additional modifications to allow for secure charging can be needed such as disabling USB computer charging and data transfer via USB. This may also require the purchase of additional hardware to support secure multi-device charging. Adding to the complexity, new devices are often released annually and support for older devices and their accessories can be discontinued with little or no notice.

Exploring Purpose-Built Interactive Displays

Figure 1 Wacom DTH-1152 Interactive Signature Display

Fortunately for credit unions, in the last several years, a range of new purpose-built products have come onto the market to address these concerns. Embracing purpose built displays can help credit unions take advantage of the benefits of interactive technology, without sacrificing their existing systems and workflows.

These interactive devices, such as the DTH-1152 from Wacom, function as a secondary monitor which responds to both pen and touch interactions. Members can review loan documents, fill out forms, and sign documents on one screen, eliminating the need for a separate signature pad. This allows credit unions to provide a seamless user experience that is intuitive to members but can also meet their back-office needs.

Figure 2 Cable and lock system on Wacom’s DTH-1152

Unlike a consumer’s iPad, these purpose-built displays generally have no local storage, do not require wireless access, and have several physical security measures that make them much harder to steal. For example, each device is cabled directly to the teller PC, making it much harder for them to be taken unnoticed. In addition, these display devices are usually equipped with a cable lock slip, a Kensington-style security lock slot, and VESA mounts to enhance the device’s physical security. In addition to providing power, the device cables are equipped with AES 256/RSA 2048 encryption to bolter electronic security of your member data.

Purpose-built displays, like those from Wacom, have a wide network of existing integrations with core processors and offer low or no-cost software development kits (SDKs) that allow for easy integration with other software systems. Credit unions can eliminate the needs for apps or third-party integrations and instead run only their existing processing software.

Interactive displays like the Wacom products are getting a lot of attention from our credit union and banking customers says Michael Ball, vice president of markets and strategy at IMM, which services more than 730 financial institutions in the United States. Our customers are looking for opportunities to redefine the in-branch experience, increase back office efficiency, and allow their staff to deepen the engagement with consumers. Utilizing interactive displays for dynamic experiences and electronic signatures can really help simplify workflows, so it’s no surprise we’re seeing it gain traction across our customer base.


Credit union leaders face growing pressure to meet the demands of tech-savvy members and manage a growing technology portfolio without compromising security or usability. To meet this challenge, credit unions should seriously consider utilizing purpose-built interactive displays to deliver immersive experiences throughout the members’ visit.

Author: Mike Dana, Business Development Manager, Financial Services, Wacom Technology. Mike is responsible for managing the development and implementation of eSignature solutions for credit unions and across the U.S. and Canada. Contact Mike at mike.dana@wacom.com or visit Wacom online at http://esignature.wacom.com/credit-unions.

About Wacom: Wacom’s vision to bring people and technology closer together through natural interface technologies has made it the world’s leading manufacturer of interactive pen display solutions for electronic signatures. Wacoms patented technology is perfect for capturing handwritten signatures thanks to high resolution and accuracy. With a Wacom signature device, members can secure and efficiently process their workflows wherever documents are filled out, signed, and verified.

Click here to see other articles from Wacom on CreditUnions.com

This article is sponsored by a recognized solutions provider in the credit union industry. Callahan & Associates does not endorse vendors or the solutions they offer, and the views and opinions offered here might not reflect those of Callahan. If you are interested in contributing an article on CreditUnions.com, please contact the Callahan team at ads@creditunions.com or 1-800-446-7453.
October 23, 2017

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