London: Growth of Internet-enabled phones like the iPhone and web use in Asia has seen a rapid depletion of IP addresses, which are going to run out in the next 24 hours.
Every device, which connects to the Internet, is assigned a “number” but with millions of web enabled phones now online they are fast running out.
IP addresses act as “phone numbers” to ensure that surfers reach websites and e-mails find their destination.
The system, which had been set up in the 1980s, with a maximum of 4.1 billion addresses was supposed to never run out.
But it does not mean the Internet will come to a halt once the addresses have finished, as a system called Internet Protocol version 6, or IPv6 has been created to replace version 4.
“It will just be ‘business as usual’ if everyone gets their job done,” the Daily Mail quoted John Curran, Chief Executive of the American Registry for Internet Numbers, one of five regional groups that dole out such addresses, as saying.
Curran said only about 2 percent of websites support the new Internet Protocol version 6.
The “end game”, the distribution of the last five blocks, was triggered by the distribution of two of the last seven blocks on February 1.
They went to the Asia Pacific Network Information Centre, the regional registry for East Asia (including India), Australia and the Pacific islands.
First Published: Thursday, February 03, 2011, 23:16