By comparison to “two way” ATMs by competitors like Robocoin, the Lamassu machines have very few features. Buyers insert cash, and their bitcoin addresses are credited with the amount, minus a fee. Bitcoin can’t be exchanged for fiat, and no advanced options offered. It’s a quick way for a cash-bearing newcomer to buy bitcoin, and that’s all. Lamassu is betting that this will be enough, at least for the moment.
Lamassu expects it will have delivered a total 200 bitcoin ATM machines to customers by May.
The Lamassu ATMs are currently priced at $5,000 each, although bulk orders can drop this price to $4,000. The new version of their ATM also comes with an optional pedestal, starting at $1,600.
While the fast turnaround time does give Lamassu a momentary advantage, there are plenty of competitors closing in. With the traditional ATM business becoming increasingly aware of bitcoin, and many existing machines already being retrofitted for alternate uses, it’s possible that the great bitcoin ATM war of 2014 is only just starting.