There has been some speculation over when Dubai would be getting its first Bitcoin ATMs installed. However, it is not likely to happen for a while. In response to a BitAccess announcement the other week, Sergey Yusupov tweeted a picture of supposed Bitcoin ATMs and said,
— Sergey Yusupov (@uniqbiun) March 18, 2014
No Green Light From DED Officials
The hype of 400 Bitcoin ATMs being installed in Dubai were dimmed by the UAE Department of Economic Development (DED). The DED told Emirates 24/7 that currently Bitcoin ATMs haven’t been give the “ok” yet. The Director of Business Registration at the DED, Ahmed Ibrahim, said,
“DED has not issued any license relating to bitcoin so far.”
Even though the Bitcoin community in Dubai is growing, there actually aren’t that many places in the country where one can use Bitcoin. The Pizza Guys, is currently the only vender in Dubai that is accepting Bitcoin. However, it is expected that the number of venders will increase with some time.
Are 400 Bitcoin ATMs Coming to Dubai?
The kiosks in the picture Yusupov tweeted turned out to be machines that will used to pay bills for international and local services, according to Emirates 24/7. These machines are called ManGo kiosks, and they have touch-screen capabilities that will allow users to pay their bills easily and quickly.
Due to the fact that the ManGo kiosks look similar to BitAccess ATMs, it could explain why Yusupov might have mistaken them for Bitcoin ATMs. However, this doesn’t negate the fact that Bitcoin ATMs will be coming to Dubai. Sure, there will not be a whopping 400 Bitcoin ATMs, but BitAccess tweeted that they will be setting up at least one in the near future.
— Bit Access (@BitAccess) March 18, 2014
Not having an army of 400 Bitcoin ATMs isn’t very exciting, however, it wouldn’t have been practical to have that many in one country. The ManGo machines do appear to be similar to Bitcoin ATMs, but they serve a totally different purpose. It is good to hear that there will be atleast one Bitcoin ATM being installed in Dubai, and if the DED approves, hopefully more are to follow.