This summer, the RIPE NCC was flooded with new membership requests. Companies wanted to become a member and receive a /22 IPv4 block (1024 public addresses) either for their own use or as a good investment. IP brokers hope to sell the addresses with huge profits. Right now, new LIRs will be warned that they will probably not receive a /22 any more, but will be put on a waiting list for a /24 – even though at the moment there are still /22s available, there more new member applications in the queue than there are still /22s left. So for sure, the IPv4 pool will be exhausted before the end of this year. And then what?
I think that this will not change your life, unless you planned to buy a house or to pay off a loan by making profit on selling IPv4 addresses. Internet Service Providers, including Fusix, have enough IPv4 addresses to serve hundreds of new customers in the next years, however the need for IPv4 addresses will decrease and disappear within a decade.
If your company wants to be in control of the user experience of its Internet applications, you will build and operate your own IP network. And believe me, if your goal is to improve the user experience of your applications, having your own IPv4 addresses should not be your concern. You can get them from your Internet provider and you may need much less of these addresses than you think. Your application can easily be made available on IPv4 – this is not a challenge. The problem appears, when a user request for your application comes from an IPv6-only network, but your application is not available on IPv6!
So, what do we do now?
Enterprises and IT service providers have good reasons to continue building their own new IP networks and implement IPv6. Just make sure that your team knows, how to support operation of your applications in the IPv6 environment. There is no discussion any more about the necessity or cost of IPv6 implementation. The necessity is there, and the cost of implementation is low. So, get it implemented and allow your team to get experienced in supporting it. It is a win-win situation, because in few years from now this will be an essential requirement in every IT job description.