IP Address News

Providing you with a single site about IP Addresses News and Usage

IP Address News - Providing you with a single site about IP Addresses News and Usage

2012 IP Address Statistics

Geoff Huston has published his annual look at IP address allocation and assignment statistics.

Addressing 2012: Another One Bites the Dust   (copy)

Plenty of numbers in the report to take a look at…  Notably, we saw ARIN’s 2012 (45 million) allocation rate increase back to its 2010 rate after falling dramatically in 2011 (23.5 million).  RIPE allocated its last IPv4 blocks under its “regular” allocation scheme in mid-September 2012 and moved into the IPv4 exhaustion phase of allocations.  In the RIPE region, there wasn’t an apparent “run-on-the-bank” increase in the allocation rate as the registry moved into the exhaustion phase.


Here Geoff’s updated RIR Address Exhaustion Model shows ARIN moving into the exhaustion phase in mid-2014 with LACNIC in late 2014.  AFRINIC’s trend-line currently points to an exhaustion point 9 years from January 2013.

Another interesting statistic found in the report is that the total number of smart phones and tablets purchased during 2012 amounts to almost 779 million units.  If each of those devices used a native IPv4 address that would use up 21% of the total IPv4 address space.

Geoff finishes the report with a somewhat pessimistic outlook for the Internet industry.

We are witnessing an industry that is no longer using technical innovation, openness and diversification as its primary means of propulsion. The widespread use of NATs limit the technical substrate of the Internet to a very restricted model of simple client/server interactions using TCP and UDP. The use of NATs force the interactions into client-initiated transactions, and the model of an open network with considerable flexibility in the way in which communications took place is no longer being sustained. Today’s internet is serviced by a far smaller number of very large players, each of whom appear to be assuming a very strong position within their respective markets. The drivers for such larger players tend towards risk aversion, conservatism and increased levels of control across their scope of operation. The same trends of market aggregation are now appearing in content provision, where a small number of content providers are exerting a dominant position across the entire Internet.

This changing makeup of the Internet industry has quite profound implications in terms of network neutrality, the separation of functions of carriage and service provision, investment profiles and expectations of risk and returns on infrastructure investments, and on the openness of the Internet itself.


IPv6 Adoption Update

Iljitsch van Beijnum has recently published an update on IPv6 adoption: IPv6 takes one step forward, IPv4 two steps back in 2012.

The second page of his article mentions the economics of IPv6 deployment as reason for the slow deployment of IPv6.

Apparently, the economics of moving to IPv6 before we absolutely, positively had to without delay weren’t there. As with all technology, IPv6 gets better and cheaper over time. And just like with houses, people prefer waiting rather than buying when prices are dropping. To make matters worse, if you’re the only one adopting IPv6, this buys you very little.

And the pain of the shrinking IPv4 supplies versus the pain of having to upgrade equipment and software varies for different groups of Internet users.

All this means that organizations that are experiencing a lack of sufficient IPv4 addresses will have to address that problem in some other way: by having multiple users share a single IPv4 address through Network Address Translation (NAT).

This echos my thoughts on the matter when I wrote about them extensively in 2011.  Use of IPv4 NAT as a substitute for moving to IPv6 was one of the concerns that I and others have raised which could delay or deter IPv6 adoption.

A positive note on IPv6 deployment since 2011:  It does seem that IPv6 has been adopted permanently by a number of the large content providers, so at least one side of the transaction is there.  Further deployment of IPv6, in my opinion, now depends on the large cable and broadband providers.  Only when millions of those subscribers are converted to be IPv6 enabled will we see significant uptake in IPv6 traffic.

Lee Howard of Time Warner noted last year at the IETF 84 that just getting to 1% of current broadband subscribers is a significant effort.  At NANOG 56, Lee also noted that the economics of IPv4 xfers vs. carrier-grade NAT vs. IPv6 aren’t as simple as they might seem.