For the first time in a decade, there was a notable decrease in the number of Bitcoin ATMs installed worldwide. As of January 1, 2024, Coin ATM Radar reported a reduction to 33,628 ATMs, down from 37,827 on January 1, 2023, representing an 11.1% decrease.
This trend reversed a steady growth observed since Coin ATM Radar began tracking crypto ATMs in October 2013. August 2022 witnessed the peak with 39,376 ATMs globally. However, the most significant decline occurred in the United States, which saw a 15.4% reduction in its ATM count. Despite this, the U.S. still hosts 82% of the world’s crypto ATMs.
The decline can be partly attributed to the performance of specific manufacturers. BitAccess, a key ATM manufacturer, saw a 26% decrease in its net installations, dropping from 9,160 in August 2022 to 6,774 by January 2024. In contrast, manufacturers like General Bytes and Genesis Coin continued to grow their Bitcoin ATM installations throughout the year.
Notably, Bitcoin Depot, a leading player in the crypto ATM space, expanded to its 28th U.S. state and reported a 3% year-on-year revenue increase in Q3 2023, despite fluctuations in Bitcoin’s price. This growth indicates continued demand for cryptocurrency ATMs in specific markets.
While the global and U.S. numbers declined, the trend in the European Union was positive. The EU saw a slight increase, with the number of crypto ATMs rising from 1,538 at the beginning of 2023 to 1,548 in 2024. Other countries like Canada, Australia, Spain, and Poland also experienced growth in their Bitcoin ATM installations, highlighting a more diverse and region-specific adoption pattern.
The use of Bitcoin ATMs, often crucial for the underbanked or unbanked, has been rising due to their ease of access. Despite higher fees compared to online crypto exchanges, BTMs offer immediate conversion of physical cash to digital currency, facilitating peer-to-peer transactions, cross-border payments, and familial monetary support. This convenience continues to drive their popularity among a certain segment of users.
However, the industry faces challenges, including scams, money laundering, and regulatory compliance. The market is undergoing consolidation as larger companies acquire smaller operators, partly due to the difficulties in maintaining regulatory compliance.
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This article was originally reported on Blockchain News.