Bitcoin ATMs Now in New Zealand, Digital Currency Seeks Worldwide Acceptance
By Reissa Su | April 1, 2014 6:31 PM EST
New Zealand's first bitcoin ATMs have finally arrived which now allows Kiwis to exchange their cash for the digital currency.
Some of Bitcoin enthusiast Mike Caldwell's coins are pictured at his office in Sandy, Utah, September 17, 2013.REUTERS/Jim Urquhart
Bitto NZ, a local firm, launched two Bitcoin ATMs at an event in Auckland on March 31. Jonathan Ewing, Bitto co-founder, said the ATMs were made by a Portuguese company known as Lamassu. The two Bitcoin ATMs that have arrived in New Zealand are part of the 120 currently being used worldwide.
The bitcoin ATMs in New Zealand are not the usual ATMs that are hooked or connected to a wall. New Zealanders can only use the machines when there are events and or by appointment. The machines are one-way which only allow users to buy bitcoin for cash. Unlike other bitcoin ATMs made by Robocoin, the one-way bitcoin ATMs will not allow users to sell the digital currency in exchange for New Zealand dollars.
Ewing said the bitcoin ATMs in New Zealand are designed to get people involved in the digital currency "ecosystem." New Zealanders can use the bitcoin ATMs by letting the machine scan the QR code of their bitcoin wallet before putting cash into the ATM. Bitcoin funds are then received in about 30 seconds with a confirmation time of up to 10 minutes.
Bitcoin Gaining Acceptance in New Zealand
A small telecommunications company in New Zealand has been accepting bitcoin as an alternative mode of payment since February. Auckland-based 2Talk has announced it will be the first company in the local telecommunications industry to allow the digital currency as payment.
According to the Herald, the small firm specializes in voice-over-Internet-protocol (VOIP) products which allow phone calls using the Web instead of the traditional landline. 2Talk also offers broadband services which customers can pay with Bitcoin.
2Talk General Manager Jude Flood said their Kiwi customers are early adopters of a new technology like bitcoin. Accepting the digital currency was naturally an added service for its customers. Flood added the digital currency can simplify the payment process since it will only take about 5 seconds.
Bitcoin is traded daily at 24/7, unlike the stock exchange which observes certain times. The digital currency's value is determined by the amount of confidence the people have in Bitcoin. It has been slowly gaining acceptance by investors and the general public.
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