First Bitcoin ATM

The first Bitcoin ATM was installed on October 28, 2013, at the Waves coffee shop Howe and Smithe Street location in Vancouver, Canada.

CBC article Bitcoin ATM goes live in Vancouver, but experts warn of risks

The ATM was installed and managed by a new company called Robocoin, which sought to make buying and selling bitcoin simpler through the use of its ATM-like machines.

Bitcoin Jobs
John Russell, co-founder of Robocoin, installing the first Bitcoin ATM at the Waves coffee shop in Vancouver. Courtesy CTV News.

While simplifying bitcoin purchases was the mission, Robocoin didn’t always succeed.

According to a report of the installation and user experience from an October 29, 2013 article in WIRED:

Robocoin’s inventor, John Russell says that connecting with the back-end exchanges is his biggest worry. During testing Monday, the BitStamp exchange that this machine uses went down temporarily, rendering the ATM unusable for a few minutes. Then there were the kinds of problems you’d expect when booting up any first-of-its kind machine. The ATM’s Windows software booted up in safe mode, and that sent Bitcoiniacs co-founder Jackson Warren off on an errand looking for a keyboard. The receipt printer didn’t work at first, and later, a plastic cover on the machine’s palm reader had to be removed. Then there was the tweaking and software adjustments that kept the machine’s creators and operators busy for about seven hours Monday.

And that was just for the installation. There were more issues for the users once it started working.

…the Robocoin user interface is still rough and not exactly easy to use.