Crypto automated teller machines (ATMs) are considered to be one of the key infrastructure pillars to assess the rate of mass adoption of cryptocurrencies. Reportedly, the number of crypto ATMs around the globe has seen a significant reduction this year.
In the first two months of 2023, the net cryptocurrency ATMs installed globally reduced by 412 machines. Since 2014, the total count of crypto ATMs has maintained a steady upward trajectory while catering to millions of users worldwide for seamless crypto-fiat conversions.
Notably, between December 2020 and January 2022, more than 1,000 crypto and Bitcoin ATMs were installed every month. However, the bear market had an immediate effect on its growth. September 2022 was the first time in history when total crypto ATMs saw a net decline.
According to data, since the start of 2022, the global crypto ATM race started witnessing a sluggish rate of installations. Todayq News reported in November that approximately 6,100 crypto and Bitcoin ATMs were installed within eleven months of the year, which was almost 1/3rd of the count of installations registered during the same period in 2021.
However, 2023 marked a new low by recording a decline in total crypto ATM installations for two consecutive months. Reported figures reveal that in January 2023, the global crypto ATM network lost 289 machines, further dropping by 123 machines in February.
While the current decline is said to be purely attributed to geopolitical tensions, revenue losses, and a prolonged bear market, service providers have been innovative in offering cheaper alternatives for operations. Recently, Bitcoin Depot, a crypto ATM provider converted its 7,000 physical machines to BitAccess software. The move helped reduce operational costs related to software licensing fees, which otherwise costs $3 million annually.
Notably, the United States and Canada are said to possess the maximum number of ATMs within their territory. As of December, there were 39,678 devices in total spread across 84 countries around the globe. However, a major share, i.e., 85% of the total count, resides in the United States of America. In the US, the highest number lies in financial hubs like New York, Los Angeles, and Miami. Its northern neighbor Canada occupied the second spot with 2,704 ATMs.
After them comes Australia which has been speedily increasing the number of ATMs. In the first week of January, Australia pushed El Salvador down to claim the fourth spot in the global crypto ATM race. Following that, within a span of three weeks, Australia jumped to third position pushing Spain down.
Crypto ATMs are an integral part of crypto adoption and the recent decline in the number suggests the direct impact of the bear market that persisted through the majority of 2022. Along with it, the collapses of big-shot crypto firms worsened it. The aforementioned reasons have likely fueled the declining trend among ATMs.