Over the past six months, Bitcoin (BTC) has recorded a number of milestones – massive adoption in El Salvador, a new all-time high of $69,000, and the network’s strongest ever hash rate. However, for the first time in history, global Bitcoin ATM installs declined in the first two months compared to the previous year.
Bitcoin ATM installations in the first two months of the year have historically increased year on year, as shown by data from Coin ATM Radar. But this year it broke the trend.
Total number of Bitcoin ATMs. Source: ATM Coin Radar
Taking only January and February 2022 into account, a total of 1,817 cryptocurrencies have been installed worldwide. In the same period last year, 2,435 cryptocurrencies were installed, which is 618 more ATMs than this year.
In 2020, only 760 ATMs were installed during this period, which eclipsed 250 ATMs in 2019.
One of the main reasons for the short-term decline may be the lack of participation of new jurisdictions. For example, the United States alone provided 93% of all cryptocurrency ATMs installed globally in 2022, with 1,689 new ATMs installed.
Global distribution of cryptocurrency ATMs. Source: ATM Coin Radar
On the other hand, Bitcoin ATMs in Europe decreased by 1 ATM in the first two months, bringing the total number of ATMs to 1,397. At the time of writing, North America accounts for over 95% of the total crypto ATMs installed with 34,284 ATMs.
Bitcoin ATM world map. Source: ATM Coin Radar
There are currently 36,067 ATMs installed. Despite a slower start to the year, crypto ATM installations are expected to increase as jurisdictions such as El Salvador plan to roll out 1,500 Bitcoin ATMs.
Unless more governments step up their efforts to adopt crypto, ATM facilities will find it difficult to maintain an upward trajectory as current crypto-friendly countries reach saturation when it comes to installing new ATMs for crypto and bitcoin.
On the subject: Tourism in El Salvador has grown by 30% since the introduction of Bitcoin, says Minister
One of the immediate positive effects of Bitcoin adoption in El Salvador is the sudden increase in tourism. Salvador’s Tourism Minister Morena Valdez said on February 22 that the country’s tourism industry has grown by more than 30% since the adoption of the bitcoin law in September 2021.
As Cointelegraph reported, Valdez said tourism growth in El Salvador has exceeded government expectations, reaching 1.4 million visitors instead of 1.1 million tourists, adding:
“We planned for $800,000 in foreign currency, but received over $1,400 million in foreign currency earnings.”