This is eighth review from our bitcoin ATM use series.
The following review is provided to us by Loren C. Ross from Huntington Beach, CA. Bitcoin machine that was reviewed is located at Ken’s Discount Liquor Store in Corona.
With the continued expansion of the use of Bitcoin as a fiat currency, a great new way to exchange it has begun to bloom. It wasn’t long ago that the only way to get Bitcoin into your wallet was to mine it, earn it, or buy it from sources such as ebay, Craig’s list, or one of many e-currency market processors. Time has passed and new technologies have evolved in the form of Bitcoin ATM’s. First, the one-way machines started appearing, mainly to placate folks who wanted to jump start their way into the market, or for those more seriously affected by the nefarious new virus strains that encode data on users hard-drives (the only way to retrieve the data is to pay a ransom in the form of Bitcoin to obtain the decrypting tool). Bitcoin ATMs facilitate the ability of users to purchase (and sell) BTC rapidly.
The ATM I found fairly close to my home via http://coinATMradar.com is a two-way set up, configured to exchange bitcoin to USD and visa-versa. This machine is conveniently located inside Ken’s Discount Liquor on the southwest corner of Lincoln and Sixth St. in Corona, California (It’s easiest to find using the Lincoln off-ramp and rolling south from the 91 freeway (a major escape route to Las Vegas from O.C.)). The ATM is a Lamassu Douro with the Santo Tirso base, the newest Lamassu model currently available and is owned and operated by Herocoin.co. Herocoin operates several machines in my community and has shown great knowledge and communicates with customers in an expeditious manner to help resolve issues regarding their machines. Once inside the store, find the machine by turning to face left and then move to the back of the store. Select the option of your choice being displayed on the machine (buy/sell).
Very important, be sure to have available a copy of or access to your online wallet. Many people rely on free hotspots for their connectivity — this is not much of a problem at this location. Open the Wi-Fi search on your device and choose the TimeWarnerHotSpot — then open a browser and sign in (if you are not already a Time-Warner customer, you will need to select the free option, and enter your email and zip-code, but after that, you may continue your transaction.) At this stage in development, the machines do assume a certain level of technical ability and knowledge of eCoin wallets, etc; but as time goes by, the associated difficulties will be overcome. That said, using this particular machine is fairly easy. In this example, the user selected Sell and the amount to sell is shown in multiples of 20 USD. The machine then displayed the amount of Bitcoin (shown in M’s) and the address for the user to send the amount to.
Don’t worry about the amount of time it takes to send, if you run into trouble the machine will periodically ask if you have sent it or not. Once the transaction is confirmed, the machine will process it and dispense the cash down into the tray located on the lower half of the machine.
It’s an easy process and if instructions were printed on the outside of the machine, it could make it easier for less experienced users in the future. If you do run into any issues, the operator can be contacted through email at: [email protected] … or reached through support at their website.
The fees vary based upon current Bitcoin value, whether the user is purchasing or selling, and the quantity being transferred. My prior experience with the Herocoin operated machines was in the Westhills/Culver City Mall for 300$’s. Today’s transaction was a withdrawal of forty bucks (see above) and paid approximately $3.50 US as a fee (It’s assumed this is a standard fee based upon time of sale. Since the transaction of 98M (9.8 Million Satoshi), the fee paid has appreciated to $4.09). These fees don’t just go to the owner operating the machine, some is also used in the blockchain for transaction validation. Withdrawing from these ATM’s (exchanging BTC for fiat) is generally more expensive than purchasing BTC depending on the machine type and operator.
At time of this writing, the CoinATMradar site listed 670 known Bitcoin ATM’s in operation after just two years since their first appearance. That number shows an incredibly rapid expansion! Being able find a good, local, easy to use machine with low fees that facilitates the conversion between cash and BTC is an important factor in the mass adoption of Bitcoin. Bitcoin ATM’s are a great way to expand the use of Bitcoin as fiat to purchase both online and in a brick and mortar retail environment.
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