Verifone Inc. said it held the first public demonstration of its Personal ATM at Demo 97, a computer industry conference, where it was judged one of eight "Premiere" products.

The Premiere designation is given to high-impact firsts in consumer technology. Personal ATM, a hand-held device that allows value and information to be transmitted over phone lines and between smart cards, "has the potential to significantly change the way we use cash for everyday purchases," said Chris Shipley, executive producer of the InfoWorld Publishing Co. event in Indian Wells, Calif.

Verifone showed Personal ATM prototypes at the American Bankers Association's bank card conference last September in Orlando.

"The U.S. smart card market is rapidly evolving, largely under the leadership of banks and credit card associations," said Thomas J. Kilcoyne, vice president and general manager of Verifone's consumer systems division. "Our Personal ATM and Verismart system will enable the technology industry to get on board easily and economically while adding vital new services to their customers."

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