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The APNIC has discovered 50 million unutilized IPv4 (Internet Protocol Version 4) addresses. In June 2020, the RIR for Asia-Pacific published the results of a study where it stated that it had to reclaim every IPv4 address. It had to do so because some of these Asia-Pacific-based businesses did not use the resources as they were not willing to transition to IPv6. Therefore, the businesses cannot set IPv4 aside, even though these keep promoting the process of adopting IPv6 addresses.

Around 54 Million Addresses Are Likely To Be Recovered

So, the APNIC has been seeking depreciated IPv4 addresses for months, and it has come across the 50 million resources in 1,395 APNIC member businesses that meet its refund requirements. Besides, 350,000 addresses were allotted some years before, and if the addresses are utilized for something except the requested purpose, these should be returned.

Furthermore, 2.3 million addresses were allotted, and a further 1.1 million were given back deliberately. The 2.3 million addresses have been unutilized for such a long time that the RIR can get back control over these. So, it could get back up to about 54 million addresses on the whole. The return of the final 3.4 million addresses of the lot depends on whether the holders of the resources request to keep maintaining these. Should those owners fail to request timely, then the RIR could recover these addresses.

To allocate the IP addresses, the RIR will introduce an IPv4 Transfer Listing Service. After introducing it, the registry will either set aside the resources for short-term and long-term use or allocate these among the members of it. Besides, the RIR will keep requesting those member businesses of it to continue giving new, depreciated addresses. These resources will be at the APNIC’s disposal by December 2020, so for now, it will take a few more months to assign these.

IPv6 Keeps Advancing Slowly

There exist just 4.2 billion 32-bit IPv4 resources, and it is difficult to accomplish a 256-address block. The minimum number of the addresses allotted to entities and operators around the world that request these is 256 at the moment. The 50 million IP addresses account for about 1.2% of the total resources in the world, and this is only a small figure. Applying solutions such as CG-NAT to it can result in internet access for millions of electronic devices.

So, it appears that it will take some more time for IPv6 to be the industry standard. As per Google’s data, there is 32% IPv6 adoption in the US, whereas Germany has 48% adoption and Spain has 2.6% only.

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