Cryptocurrency exchange Binance has announced the launch of Binance Lite Australia, a cash-to-bitcoin platform that allows users to purchase bitcoins with Australian dollars from a network of 1,300-plus newsstands around the country. While Binance Lite Australia currently only supports purchases of bitcoin with the Australian dollar, there are "plans to support more digital currencies and fiat purchasing options in the future."
According to Binance's announcement, the new platform will represent the exchange's first fiat-to-crypto gateway in Australia. Once users have completed the account verification process, they will be able to place an order online, deposit money at their nearest newsstand, and receive their bitcoin "within minutes."
As far as user fees are concerned, Binance will charge a five percent fee for all purchases made on the platform. There are also a few privacy concerns tied to the platform. In order to complete the account verification process, users will need to submit one to two government- issued ID documents as well as verify their residential address. Moreover, users will be required to submit both their email and mobile phone number when they fill out an order online.
Despite falling short on the more anonymous qualities that draw people to bitcoin and cryptocurrency in general, Binance's chief financial officer Wei Zhou stated in the release that Binance Lite Australia is part of the exchange's plan to "roll out more fiat to crypto gateways around the world to support the growth of our industry." The new Australian platform is consistent with a string of crypto-made-easy projects the exchange has recently launched. In October 2018, Binance introduced Binance Uganda, a local fiat-to-crypto exchange where users can buy bitcoin and Ether with the Ugandan shilling. More recently, at the end of January, Binance announced a partnership with the payment processing firm Simplex, allowing users to purchase bitcoin, Ether, Litecoin, and XRP using a Visa or Mastercard credit or debit card.
As for Binance Lite Australia, the platform's website provides users with a map of newsstands that are participating in the project. The platform itself is similar to a move made by the French FinTech startup Keplerk. In November 2018, the startup partnered with tobacco shops around Paris to sell bitcoin vouchers to its customers.