While cryptocurrency has been sweeping over the whole of the Western world over the past year, it was only a matter of time before it would hit the lesser-known parts of Europe.
One such place is the picturesque archipelago of Malta.
This sunny little nation has recently become an emerging market for the exchange and transactions of Bitcoin, and now Malta has established its first Bitcoin ATM, set up in Sliema.
Local business leaders realized that the new found surge in Bitcoin transactions in Malta are fortuitous for establishing a dedicated ATM for the same currency.
There was, for a brief time, some lack of clarification regarding the actual location of this intended ATM.
But finally, it was concluded that it was going to be set up outside Venture Trading in the city of Sliema.
There are some definite advantages of operations expected from the newly established Bitcoin ATM.
Cryptocurrency has become popular around the globe since it allows people to manage their physical and virtual money efficiently.
And it is expected that a dedicated Bitcoin ATM will allow any user to buy Bitcoins with the normal fiat currency instead of facing hassles.
The transaction rate will be 8 percent, which is pretty standard. Also, this is only when facilitating cash transactions for buying cryptocurrency.
The bigger concern, however, is whether people are going to use the ATM in large numbers or not. In Malta alone, it has been reported that the value of Bitcoin is well above 2,000 Euros.
That reflects the increasing popularity of this digital currency.
But will it also guarantee that more people are going to use the new Bitcoin ATM? That remains to be seen.
With the recent spree of hacking and malware attacks, the credibility of cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin has taken a bit of a big dent.
This can act as a negating factor for people within the newfound Bitcoin market of Malta to adopt to this new, encrypted currency in a jiffy.
On the other hand, more mainstream Bitcoin exchanges, which had existed hitherto as the only place for cryptocurrency users, are insisting on more security safeguards.
This is being done, obviously, to stave off more occurrences of cyber crimes.
But these security safeguards, including verification documentation like passports and other papers, can also be discouraging enough to get new cryptocurrency users on board.
On the other hand, a Bitcoin ATM will offer privacy and security without the technical hassles and paperwork that normal cryptocurrency transactions usually entail.
An ATM experience, as we all know, is also quite personal and it will offer greater levels of convenience and flexibility for those who wish to use Bitcoins for all walks of life.
Malta is indeed a potentially rich market for cryptocurrency. And the newly established ATM can be a smart, strategic decision to advance that.
The coming months might see new developments to further guide potential interest, much of which will also depend on factors like quick adoption and solid security to persuade people for the same.