As we announced at the AFP Annual Conference this week, Digital Check has signed deals to become either an exclusive or a preferred equipment provider at four of the “Big Five” banks in Canada. It’s been an exciting past 18 months for us north of the border, as remote deposit systems have come from drawing-board concepts to actual products that are ready to launch. And besides the obvious appeal of opening up a new market, it’s been interesting to watch a couple of other elements unfold:

RDC is a well-established technology
It’s amazing sometimes to think about how far things have come in the 10 years since the Check 21 Act took effect, and nowhere is this more apparent than when going into a new market. No longer do we get the questions of “Is it possible?” or “What if there’s unforeseen risk?” It’s been proven and it’s ready to go, and that’s tremendously helpful in getting projects off the ground. You’ll remember that in the U.S., there was enough hesitation that it took several years for RDC to gain widespread adoption; there’s none of that hesitation now.

Its also been pleasant on the public side, both in Canada and in other countries where check image exchange is getting under way. People know what RDC is, and are even excited for its arrival, particularly on smartphones. It’s a long way from back in 2004, when Check 21 was greeted with suspicion, with many public advocates complaining that it was a plot by banks to save themselves millions while piling on new fees for bounced checks, which there would be more of thanks to the shorter clearing time. Thankfully, it’s turned out to be a win for both sides, and most people – bankers and public included ”” have had time to understand that.

RDC is a BETTER technology
We’ve said it before, but if you’re starting from scratch today, you’re a lot better off thanks to all the options you have to choose from. All the ideas about fighting fraud, new customer features, and more advanced hardware that have evolved over the past 10 years are now built in to the system. There’s a bigger choice of software providers, and most are cross-compatible with the major hardware brands. It’s been another win-win for banks and customers, as both are reaping the benefits of a more fully developed product.

We’ll continue to bring you more news from Canada as we see RDC move toward full deployment. We’re sure we’ll learn a few things ourselves, too.