North America Running Out of IPv4 Addresses
The internet has been expanding at a massive scale since its incarnation in the 80s. In the past decade alone we have seen how more accessible the internet has been made for the world. This increase in accessibility, though, in turns means an increase in the housing requirement.
The internet is quickly running out of IP addresses, and simply adding new domain names or suffices won’t help the matter in the long run. According to the American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN), only 3.4 million IP addresses are now left available from the 1.3 billion IP addresses allotted to North America.
There are only 4.3 billion possible addresses in IPv4, and one can only presume that other regions aside of North America are too running out of their allotted addresses.
In comparison, the newer IPv6 protocol houses practically unlimited addresses. The next generation of the protocol can host trillions of addresses and is the next step in the evolution of the internet.
However, an extremely large crowd of the globe is still stuck with IPv4 due to obstacles that are there when trying to switch over to the newer protocol. The foremost is the cost factor and companies are reluctant to purchase new routers and network switches to upgrade their IPv4 addresses to IPv6.
There are some companies, though, who have already begun preparing for the new age. Facebook has moved 90 percent of its IP addresses to IPv6. Others like Microsoft are hording abandoned IPv4 addresses – it once spent $7.5 million to purchase 666,624 addresses from dismantled Nortel Networks.
Presently it costs $11.25 per IP address, but these prices are expected to rise sharply when the time comes.