Time for some more Bitcoin ATM news, as a new machine has recently been installed in Vancouver, Canada. What might be the most striking part about this ATM is the fact it looks like a pretty ordinary banking machine.
Vancouver’s newest Bitcoin ATM is called “BTM” (Bitcoin Teller Machine), manufactured by an Ottawa-based company called BitAccess , and has been installed by Calgary-based Cavirtex. As these BTM devices are able to both sell and buy Bitcoin in exchange to and from fiat currency (only CAD at this point), it makes for an interesting device to have. Especially considering its location, which is Vancouver’s Pacific Central Station.
One of the reporters from Straight.com, who also wrote the article we base this post, attended a BTM demo after the device was installed. Judging by the price to buy 1 Bitcoin from the ATM, and comparing it to the price on Cavirtex (which is a Bitcoin exchange), he deducted the markup fee was around 9 percent. A lot higher than any other Bitcoin ATM in Vancouver at this point unfortunately.
In order to make sure your Bitcoin purchase (or sale) is being executed securely, users are asked to enter their mobile phone number when conducting a transactions. A verification code will be sent to this number, coming from BitAccess, to authorize the transaction. Once the code has been entered on the touchscreen, your transaction will be completed.
Some of you will probably wonder why this mobile number is required in order to use the Bitcoin Teller Machine. This security check has been put in place in order to distinguish users from one another, as every user (or mobile phone number) falls under a CAD$3,000 purchase limit per day. A rather unique approach, which we might see being integrated into other Bitcoin ATMs in the future.
“There still isn’t clear regulations as to the way those ATM machines should operate. However, Cavirtex is being proactive. We’re actually going above the regulatory requirements for now, because we know that within a couple of months, maybe within a couple of weeks, when FINTRAC [Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada] sets certain guidelines, we’re already adhering to the stricter guidelines.”
-Peter Vach, Cavirtex Operations & Business Development Manager
Even though Bitcoin wallets for smartphones or tablets are becoming more widely available, it may occur you want to purchase Bitcoin from a BTM but you don’ thave a Bitcoin address at the ready. Have no fear, as the Bitcoin Teller Machine can print out a Bitcoin paper wallet, of which you can then scan the QR code to complete the transaction.
(I know these kind of events are very unlikely to occur, but it is still a nice feature to have.)
Two other neat , albeit not unique features include the printing of a receipt once your Bitcoin transaction has been completed. On top of that, you will receive a text message confirming the completion of your transaction as well.
As with any Bitcoin ATM, the BTM has a bill validator which works with bills ranging from 5 to 100 CAD. This also puts the minimum purchase amount at CAD$5 , allowing customers to purchase small bits of a Bitcoin if they so prefer.