Despite the growing global adoption rate of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, the number of physical ATMs dedicated to fiat-crypto conversions is on the decline. Coin ATM Radar data reveals that 3,627 crypto ATMs were removed from the network in March 2023, bringing the total number of ATMs to 33,727. This represents a significant reduction in the number of crypto ATMs available for public use, and it marks a reversal of the trend that had been ongoing for most of the decade since the first Bitcoin ATM was launched on Oct. 29, 2013.
Net crypto ATM installations have generally remained positive over the years, indicating a steady increase in total crypto ATMs worldwide. However, the trend is now reversing, as shown by data from Coin ATM Radar. Between September 2022 and March 2023, net crypto ATM installations declined for four months. March 2023 stands out as the month with the largest monthly decline, with 3,627 crypto ATMs being removed from the network.
The chart above shows the number of Bitcoin machines installed over time, revealing the sudden drop in the total number of crypto ATMs. This reduction is significant, considering that the highest number of ATMs installed in a single month was 2,048, recorded back in January 2021.
Despite the decline, there is a bright side as April broke the three-month-long downtrend by recording 37 crypto ATM installations on April 1. General Bytes, BitAccess, and Genesis Coin are the current market leaders in manufacturing crypto ATMs. General Bytes, however, faced a security incident in March that saw its customers’ hot wallets accessed and lost some customer funds. The company promised to reimburse the losses and issued a statement saying, “We have taken immediate steps to prevent further unauthorized access to our systems and are working tirelessly to protect our customers.”
The decline in physical crypto ATMs could be due to several factors. One possible explanation is the growing use of digital wallets and online platforms that allow for easy cryptocurrency trading without the need for physical ATMs. Another possible factor is the lack of regulatory clarity in some countries, making it difficult for operators to comply with local laws and regulations. Additionally, the COVID-19 pandemic and associated lockdowns could have led to reduced demand for physical ATMs.
In conclusion, the declining trend in physical crypto ATMs is a cause for concern for those who prefer to use physical ATMs to convert fiat to cryptocurrencies. However, the emergence of digital wallets and online platforms provides an alternative means of accessing and trading cryptocurrencies. As the cryptocurrency market continues to evolve, it remains to be seen how physical crypto ATMs will adapt to changing market conditions and regulatory environments.