IPv4 To IPv6 Transition – Is It A Costly Affair?

The biggest and the most essential question in deploying IPv6 and depleting IPv4 is – How much will it cost, in doing this transition? Well, the answer is in fact one that is elaborate and hence cannot be precisely penned down as so and so amount of money, time and energy. The official depletion of IPv4 took place at a ceremony that was held in Miami during the first week of February. And with that the free pool of available IPv4 address space were also handed over to the five global Regional Internet Registries (RIRs).

The ceremony which showcased the transition from IPv4 to IPv6, according to Rod Beckstom, CEO of ICANN, needs to be marked as one of the most essential days in the history of Internet or World Wide Web. Speaking about the same Beckstorm said, “It marks far more than the transition from one Internet protocol to another; it marks the amazingly successful growth of the Internet with people all over the world coming online. A pool of more than 4 billion Internet addresses has just been emptied this morning; completely depleted, there are no more“.

As stated earlier, the cost of this transition is quite elaborate. In the sense each player or actor who plays a role in the internet world needs to address the cost with respect to the kind of role he/ she plays. John Curran, president and CEO of the American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN) said. “The fact of the matter is that we’ve known about this transition and there are a lot of parties that have actively deployed IPv6“. Curran also said that ARIN itself is using IPv6, and he also noted that the cost an organization incurs to deploy the latest IP version is not too much, except for a little configuration work to turn on IPv6.

Major content companies like Google and Facebook also have their IPv6 versioned websites and the deployment of the same has also happened for the sake of normal business of making content available. But they haven’t yet made these services available online and they will do so during June on the World IPv6 Day. Curran also suggested that online firms and any firm that has its presence online need to ensure that their projects that will be rolled out are both IPv4 and IPv6 compliant. This is done in order to make sure that there are no hiccups as far as accessing website on both versions of the Internet Protocol.

Now coming to the actual cost in terms of money in ensuring there is a worldwide IPv6 adoption. The estimate of moving IPv6 to an emerging country of about 50 million people is roughly a billion dollars and that probably includes upgrades they want to do to their network. Relative to the 2005 report which estimated the U.S. federal government shift to IPv6 to be $75 billion, a global transition would definitely cost billions of dollars.

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