I had the pleasure of stopping by the ANX office yesterday and getting a few minutes to record this short video explaining how a bitcoin ATM works. In a matter of seconds, the HK$10 bill I insert into the machine is converted into BTC at the price quoted on the screen, and I get a notice on my phone that I have received them on my Android wallet.
This should be even better than the brick and mortar store for simply getting everyday users, who really don’t care much about bitcoin or have much interest in opening accounts or multiple wallets, to simply get some on their phone or other non-iOS device (the App store I believe still does not allow a bitcoin wallet), for use in quick purchases and online transfers that really should be as easy as cash or e-mail.
I imagine a future where I can travel to another country without an ATM card, and simply withdraw cash by scanning the bitcoin ATM machine’s code with my phone and exchanging a few coins on the spot, hopefully through a machine that showing competitive rates from several local exchanges or trading providers. When I’m done with my trip, I could simply deposit any excess cash back into the machine to convert back into my wallet. This of course might seem unthinkable now when bitcoin is so volatile and illiquid, but the technology should get us to think how easy moving cash around the world should be.
This video will be used by General Assembly for the presentation Bitcoin 101 for non-tech businesses in Hong Kong on April 8th.