The UK's Link Interchange network has begun the roll-out of a mobile top-up service across its network of 43,000 cash machines.
ATM top-ups are now available to Co-operative Bank cardholders at 140 of its branch-based machines and at 500 of the 2200 cash machines deployed by Moneybox Corporation.
Card issuer Creation Financial Services expects to be operational in July 2003 and independent cash machine deployer Cardpoint has also signed contracts to participate.
Link says it is in advanced discussion with other financial institutions and expects to announce more participants shortly.
The service can be used to top up phones belonging to the Vodafone, T-Mobile, O2 or Orange networks. Virgin Mobile has also agreed to offer the facility to subscribers.
A poll commissioned by NCR and conducted by NOP, identified strong consumer demand for non-cash ATM services. Some 57% of people would find it useful to top up their pre-paid mobile phone from their ATM – including 79% of under 25 year olds surveyed.
Nigel Wright, operations and development director of Link comments: "The prepay phone is used by the same group that most frequently uses cash machines, so we see a close correlation between the two markets."