Bitcoin ATM maker Lamassu releases open-source platform

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If Lamassu has its way, bitcoin ATMs may soon be seen as more than a novel way to purchase digital currency. The ATM maker has released a new, open-source software platform today via GitHub that allows ATM owners to set their machines up as airport-style cash exchanges, bill-payment kiosks and remittance terminals, in addition to standard ATM functions. The platform, named Rakía, also allows all Lamassu ATMs to operate without being tied to a centralized service, effectively making them independent nodes on the network. Additional customizations allow for owners to set custom commission rates, trading processes and price settings.

In a statement published by CoinDesk, Lamassu co-founder Zach Harvey said that the Rakía platform was intended to empower users to implement new services that are outside of Lamassu’s business model. The company’s machines are perfectly capable of powering a bitcoin-backed competitor to Western Union, but Lamassu has little interest in launching a product for that market.

We want to create a platform for thousands of small businesses to compete against these legacy financial institutions, and against each other. These are markets in dire need of fierce competition to bring down transfer and exchange fees.”

Lamassu’s open-source approach follows steps by Las Vegas-based bitcoin ATM maker Robocoin to move into the global remittance and bank-like services market. With low-cost open-source ATM competition like Project Skyhook nipping at the heels of both manufacturers, and the traditional ATM industry increasingly positive about bitcoin’s potential, Lamassu’s hybrid system of proprietary hardware and open-source software might prove to be a huge advantage.

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