For the first time since the crypto winter of 2018, bitcoin (BTC) ATMs are returning to Japan, allowing residents of Tokyo and Osaka to trade cryptocurrency from sources other than their phones and computers.
Previously prevalent in major commercial areas, cryptocurrency ATMs—also referred to as BTMs in Japan and elsewhere—became less popular after the devastating Coincheck hack in early 2018 brought the Japanese crypto industry to its knees.
Because of the Mt. Gox incident in 2013–2014, which damaged investor confidence, cryptocurrency investments fell out of favor in the years that followed. As a result, in the months following the Coincheck incident, BTMs were closed and decommissioned in Japan, which was once the center of gravity for the cryptocurrency markets.
It has been four years since a BTM has operated in Japan, according to Mainichi and Nikkei. Today, however, that is no longer the case thanks to the installation of machines in both Tokyo and Osaka.
The company behind the move, Gaia BTM, revealed in a press release that traders will be able to buy or sell bitcoin (BTC), as well as ethereum (ETH), bitcoin cash (BCH), and litecoin (LTC).
Gaia BTM asserted that it would carry on installing equipment across the nation in the months to come with the goal of having 50 BTMs operational in a year. In the following three years, it also plans to increase that number to 130.
The media reported that this would be a first for the Japanese crypto industry because no Japanese company has ever operated a BTM in the nation; all previous BTMs were created by foreign companies or unregistered domestic businesses.
A licensed cryptocurrency exchange allows Gaia BTM, an Osaka-based business, to carry out transactions using its own trading platform.
The business added that it had incorporated "anti-crime measures" into the gadgets to spot any potential money-laundering attempts.
Withdrawals will be permitted in 1,000 yen (USD 7.64) increments, with a USD 764 transaction limit. The daily withdrawal limit for users will also be USD 2,290.
The company's CEO was quoted as saying that BTMs give cryptocurrency investors a "sense of security" because they enable them to "convert their [cryptoassets] into cash immediately."
According to the business, coins like BTC have the potential to become "payment currencies," so it also stated that it wanted to "expand" into the crypto-related payments sector.
By fLEXI tEAM