Why the wait to get my funds?
I can go to the ATM and use my card I can have money in my hand instantly. Why does it take at least 10 minutes for me to get my money when I cash in my Bitcoin?
It is because banks are centralized. They are the ones that hold your funds and are able to release them instantly when you use a card or chip that has your account information stored on it. This information is kept between you and the bank and cannot be shared with anyone else.
Bitcoin is not centralized like a bank. It is “decentralized” which means your transaction information is shared on a digital ledger that is connected to a network of computers that checks and confirms your transaction. The transaction cannot be changed or reversed once it is final. This information is then stored on “blocks” that record some or all of the most recent transactions from many sources.
Each block holds about 1MB of information. When the block gets full it is added to the blockchain that holds the information of all previous transactions and is copied and shared among the network. Once that is done a new block will be formed. The average time taken to find a block for a transaction is 10 minutes. This can change significantly more or less depending on luck and the volume of transactions taking place at that particular moment.
Using a Bitcoin ATM usually results in a wait to withdraw cash. Log in to your account on the Bitcoin ATM, and select the “Withdraw Cash” option. Enter the amount of cash you wish to withdraw, and send Bitcoin to the wallet address QR code indicated. Once the transaction is confirmed on the blockchain network, you can collect your cash. This typically happens in under 30 minutes. Not all Bitcoin ATM machines dispense cash. Those that do are known as cash-in-cash-out machines and they can be hard to find.