Internet forced to switch over to IPv6, how much will it really cost?

Posted by Lydia Leavitt

With mounting Y2K-like concern, many are increasingly worried about what exactly will happen now that last batch of IPv4 ISP addresses have been allocated.

Some are concerned about unknown consequences, while others identify the formidable costs associated with the switchover to IPv6 as the primary issue.

In 2005, one report estimated the shift of the U.S. federal government alone from IPv4 to IPv6 would cost around $75 million dollars.

And ICANN CEO Rob Beckstrom projected the cost of moving an emerging market country of 50 million people to IPv6 at "roughly a billion dollars," a figure which probably includes "upgrades they wanted to do to their network anyway."

"We're talking about billions of dollars here globally, we're not talking trillions of dollars," Beckstrom said.

"There is some expense and there is some effort, but if you look at the scale of investment in IT infrastructure, it will probably have more to do with how that spend is directed, than creating additional line items or explicit growth projects."

"The cost is one of these items that each actor, depending on what role they play in the Internet, needs to address and everyone has their own role," explained John Curran, president and CEO of the American Registry for Internet Numbers.

Curran also noted that many Internet companies have already rolled out IPv6 versions of their websites, including
Google and Facebook.

(Via Internet News