SAN DIEGO - The first ever Bitcoin ATM was unveiled Thursday, putting San Diego at the forefront of this new technology.
BitcoinATM CEO Evan Rose, a San Diegan, said, "Basically allowing people to buy Bitcoins with cash, cash Bitcoins out right on the spot."
Bitcoin are not physical currency; they are digital currency that can be sent through the Internet without going through a bank or clearinghouse. It's anonymous on the free market, and the financial world is watching this new way of exchanging currency closely.
Bitcoin can be used to buy products online with merchants who accept them.
"Bitcoin is inherently technical; it's somewhat difficult to buy, it's very difficult to exchange Bitcoin for hard currency and the solution that we've come up with in the very familiar ATM platform accomplishes all three of those bottlenecks," said Rose.
Right now, all Bitcoin exchanges are done online, but the new ATM changes it all by allowing users to get cash out or make deposits to their accounts.
Users can walk up to the machine and make a deposit. The user then gets a receipt and that receipt has a confirmation number on it. That confirmation number can be given to anybody around the world and they can go up to a machine and make a withdrawal themselves.
There are several currency exchanges where users can trade Bitcoin for dollars, Euro and more. The value is all based on currency, and on May 2, 1 Bitcoin was worth about $100.
"Bitcoin is an idea whose time has come," said Rose.
Bitcoin ATMs could soon be in neighborhoods and cities all over the world in 3 to 6 months.
BitcoinATM will also franchise so anyone can own their own Bitcoin ATM.
Learn more about Bitcoin by visiting http://bitcoin.org/en/
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