A Bitcoin ATM is a physical terminal used to exchange fiat currencies for Bitcoin and/or other cryptocurrencies. Some Bitcoin ATMs or sometimes referred to as BTMs for Bitcoin Teller Machine and are capable of making two way exchanges so you can either buy or sell bitcoin for fiat at a physical terminal.
Bitcoin ATMs Are All Around the World
Bitcoin ATMs offer a unique interface with bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in general because of their familiarity with consumers. Most people are familiar with a standard ATM for getting cash with their debit card in countries all around the world. I have used my bank card to withdraw cash in probably about a dozen countries and the process is pretty much the same everywhere I go. Bitcoin ATMs offer a similar on-ramp in that they are something that people are relatively familiar with using and this absolutely helps to bring new users into the bitcoin space.
Why use Bitcoin ATMs?
Bitcoin AMTs often offer a couple of advantages over buying from an exchange or using peer-to-peer services to buy or sell bitcoin.
Bitcoin ATMs are about as instant as they come. When you use a bitcoin ATM, you simply insert fiat and with just a couple taps on screen, you have bitcoin sent to your wallet moments later. This is as simple and easy as it comes in the bitcoin space.
Bitcoin ATMs also typically offer more privacy than dealing with any sort of large centralized exchange. While most ATMs in the US will require some sort of personal information, other terminals around the world offer more privacy for their users.
Unfortunately, the biggest downside of using bitcoin ATMs that that the convenience often comes with a premium price tag and most ATM operators often charge premiums well above 10%. Regardless of the premium price tag, people still use them to buy and sell and what’s even more interesting is that the placement of new bitcoin ATMs is still growing. There are probably even pretty good number of ATMs that are not publicly listed and operate on more of a peer-to-peer network of users.
Where Can I Find a Bitcoin ATM?
The best resource online for all things related to bitcoin ATMs is a service named Coin ATM Radar. Their service helps users not only locate the ATMs nearest to them but also gives information on fees, hours of operation, type of ATM terminal and some other useful pieces of information about each terminal on their map.
Additional Info on Bitcoin ATMs
Bitcoin ATMs are often talked about in bitcoin related news publications. Here are some articles that might help you to better understand how bitcoin ATMs are being used around the world and possibly learn more about the opportunity to operate a bitcoin ATM yourself.
What is a bitcoin term that you would like us to further define for you? Let us know with a comment below or tweet us @WhatIsBitcoin.