Australia’s first two-way Bitcoin ATM opens today in the Westfield Sydney shopping centre.
The machine is owned and managed by ABA Technology Pty Ltd, “a small group of small team of experienced entrepreneurs and investors,” which has plans for over 100 ATMs in Australia by 2015.
As expected, customers can withdraw BTC from their wallets as cash instantly. They can also purchase BTC instantly at the ATM, although its ability to automatically create a wallet for first-time buyers remains unclear.
Judging the market
ABA states on its website
that the Aussies’ first machine will “remove the intimidating and difficult aspects of buying and selling bitcoins”
. The pioneering ATM in Australia will certainly become a talking point, although the attention paid to the Finnish machines was perhaps down to increased customer education in the form of Q&A sessions held shortly after the launch.
The company certainly has faith, however, with an ambitious plan to create a network of over 500 machines worldwide within the next two years.
The two ATMs were reportedly both purchased from RoboCoin, implementers of the world’s first Bitcoin machine in Vancouver last October, at a cost of approximately US$20,000 each.
Meanwhile, ABA could soon face competition from Diamond Circle
, another Australian firm which introduced the unique cashless Bitcoin ATM in March. While it has so far not been available for public use, its advantages lie principally in allowing users to buy BTC with a credit card and withdraw it directly to their nominated bank account. Diamond Circle is also reportedly developing wallet software and an integrated POS system.
Time will tell whether there is room in the Australian market for both models, or whether one will eclipse the other before it has even gathered consumer recognition.
Blake Anderson "I think that they are fantastic! The biggest concern I have heard is trepidation regarding identity verification and those data stores being audited by the government."