In October, the world’s first Bitcoin ATM made headlines around the world when it opened at Waves Coffee House (100-900 Howe Street) in downtown Vancouver.
On January 30, the city’s second Bitcoin ATM went live with much less fanfare. This week, I checked out the new machine during a visit to the office of Quadriga CX (332 Water Street) in Gastown.
Unlike the big (and famous) Waves ATM, which is operated by Bitcoiniacs and Robocoin, Quadriga CX’s small Lamassu Bitcoin Machine (price tag: US$5,000) only lets you exchange cash for bitcoins and not the other way around. The fee is three percent (on top of the Bitstamp price), compared to the five-percent commission at Waves. Both ATMs have a $3,000 transaction limit.
Using Quadriga CX’s ATM is super-easy. I just pressed “start” on the touchscreen, scanned the QR code for one of my Bitcoin addresses, and inserted some cash. Moments later, the bitcoins (okay, much less than one bitcoin) appeared in my Blockchain wallet.
According to Quadriga CX CEO Gerald Cotton (who is featured in this week’s Geek Speak), his company has more Lamassu machines on order. Their plan is to install them at other locations across Vancouver and Canada.