A multimedia kiosk is any type of large computer terminal, most often located in a public place, which the general public may use for various purposes. An ATM is a type of multimedia kiosk, for instance; a user can walk up to the terminal, insert a debit card, and withdraw money from an account without needing to interact with a bank teller or other employee. Multimedia kiosks are often found in places such as supermarkets, shopping malls, airports, and convenience stores, among others, and most feature convenient touchscreens.
Though an ATM is probably the most common type of multimedia kiosk, there are many others available as well. A photo printing kiosk is very common. These often have different functions; for instance, one may be able to insert the memory card from a digital camera. The photos will then be loaded onto the screen, where the user can individually select which photos he or she wants to print.
In addition to selecting the photos to be printed, the user may be able to make changes to size, change photos from color to black and white, or add colorful borders to the photos, among other changes. Some photo printing kiosks can print the pictures immediately, while others must be printed by a store employee, and may usually be picked up within one hour to one day. Other types of photo printing kiosks allow one to scan in a physical photo or multiple photos on a flatbed scanner, and the photo can then be manipulated, enhanced, or reprinted without damaging or changing the original.
Another type of interactive multimedia kiosk is a DVD rental kiosk. These allow customers to insert payment, generally through cash or a credit card, and select a DVD to rent. The customer may then return the DVD to the kiosk when he or she is finished watching it. These are just a few of the many different types of multimedia kiosks available, many of which can be customized for different purposes at schools or companies. Some businesses even allow their employees to clock in and out of work through the use of a multimedia kiosk.
If a business wishes to add a multimedia kiosk to their location, it is up to them to purchase or rent the machine. The business is typically responsible for maintaining the kiosk, though the distributor generally offers support services for a fee as well. Many people enjoy the convenience and ease of use of a multimedia kiosk, and find that it benefits their business to have one.