The 12 Days of IPv6: Day 7, A World Without IPv6

By Jennifer Bly - External Relations Manager, ARIN


Last May the Internet community was buzzing about World IPv6 Day. While many individuals remained optimistic about the upcoming 24-hour IPv6 trial period, they couldn’t help but wonder: What would the world look like if the Internet was still 99% based on IPv4 five years down the road? Would the Internet simply shut down? Would it cause an IPocalypse?

Carolyn Duffy Marsan took on these tough questions in her Network World article, “What if IPv6 Simply Fails to Catch On? Ultimately, she determined three major byproducts of a failed migration to IPv6.

Increased Complexity of Internet Infrastructure:Multiple layers of network address translation (NAT) devices would be required to share limited IPv4 addresses among a rapidly growing base of users and devices in contrast to the well thought-out architecture that is IPv6.

Increased Costs:Attempting to hang onto an IPv4 Internet would cause us to see workarounds, hacks and other Internet problems which would have significant cost impacts.

Stifled Innovation:The Internet would become increasingly fragile which would have a negative effect on potential development of application or service innovation. Moreover, existing companies would hold all existing address space, closing out Internet access to innovative startups.

Our CEO, John Curran, notes that five years from now, IPv6 may still be a smaller amount of Internet traffic than IPv4. However, there is no way to stretch four billion addresses to meet the projected 50 billion address need, and therein lies the critical reason for a complete IPv6 migration.

Please join us tomorrow for Day 8 of The 12 Days of IPv6, as we review the success of World IPv6 Day.


Jennifer Bly

External Relations Manager, ARIN