An Internet crunch coming?

According to a CNN article, the Internet is reaching its limits as we will soon see an IP-address shortage.

From CNN:

Within 18 months it is estimated that the number of new devices able to connect to the world wide web will plummet as we run out of "IP addresses" -- the unique codes that provide access to the Internet for everything from PCs to smart phones. "The Internet as we know it will no longer be able to grow," Daniel Karrenberg, chief scientist at RIPE NCC, the organization that issues IP addresses in Europe, told CNN. "That doesn't mean it will cease to function, but entry could be limited to new devices."

Some estimate that by September 2011 the last large batches of addresses will be issued, meaning that months after that date there will be no new addresses available.

But, the article also states there is a solution if we act quickly enough: replace the current Internet Protocol Addressing Scheme version 4 (IPv4) with a newer IP-addressing system - Ipv6, which has more addresses available for use. However, many businesses are slow to adopt their technology to the newer system.

"This growing problem has been compounded in recent years as the amount of hardware needing an Internet connection has risen enormously, thanks largely to the popularity of smartphones... and the rapid pace of technological development in countries like China and India," the article states.

Follow our coverage of the Internet here.

About the author

Daryl Paranada is the associate web producer for Marketplace overseeing all daily website content and production, as well as producing multimedia features -- including the popular economic explainer series Whiteboard -- and special projects. Follow him on Twitter @darylparanada.

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