Do you know those machines at the supermarket that turn your gallon jugs into a more usable currency value? They are going to start selling Bitcoins .
To make this dream of buying come true, Coinstar, the company behind those ubiquitous kiosks for change counting, has partnered with Coinme, a startup that runs a small network of cryptocurrency vending machines across the country.
"Coinstar is always looking for new ways to deliver value to our consumers when they visit our kiosks, and Coinme's innovative delivery mechanism along with Coinstar's flexible platform allows users to easily purchase Bitcoin with cash, "said Coinstar's CEO, Jim Gaherity, in the first announcement of GeekWire.
With 20,000 machines worldwide, Coinstar operates a fairly large network that could be enabled to deliver digital money. As the company's announcement states, there are "thousands in the US market that can be enabled to accept Bitcoin transactions" even though we would think it will not hit those numbers for a while.
Coinme has digital currency vending machines in 11 states, including several locations in Texas, Washington and California, among others. Although initially it is not clear exactly how many machines will be ready for Bitcoin, the Coinme website also states that the partnership will lead to "thousands of places to buy Bitcoin".
The Bitstar Coinstar localization tool did not direct us to local kiosks when we tried, but if you can track one, buying Bitcoin from updated machines seems pretty easy. It is worth noting that you will need cash for the exchange – here you will not be able to exchange digital money or credit for cryptocurrency.
After attaching your paper money to one of the machines, the newfangled kiosk will distribute a coupon for a Bitcoin redemption code that will direct you to Coinme. The limit is $ 2500 and you'll have to connect a phone number to the transaction, although it's not clear if you can simply invent one to get around that kind of questionable requirement.
After the wild peaks of last year and the painful, but unavoidable, minimums, the cooling period of the cryptocurrency could be here a little – especially if the stock market keeps everyone beating the hatches. That said, the kiosks would have had more interest during the most hectic moments of the first months of 2018, when everyone tried to navigate the sometimes complex process of buying their first cryptocurrency. And yet, given the Coinstar ubiquity, the Bitcoin kiosks may be of interest to some buyers who have just grossed $ 30 billion.