Big upgrade of Internet protocols

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Big upgrade of Internet protocols

The Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning said yesterday it will start commercializing a new Internet protocol in the second half of this year that will provide an almost unlimited number of Internet addresses.

The current fourth version of the Internet protocol, known as IPv4, has been running out of addresses with around 4.29 billion IP addresses assigned to various institutions.

IPv6, the sixth revision and the successor to IPv4, functions similarly to the old version in that it provides a unique, numerical IP address necessary for Internet-enabled devices to communicate.

But unlike IPv4, which uses 32-bit addresses, IPv6 utilizes 129-bit addresses, which will allow for an almost unlimited number.

This is necessary because of the increased demand for addresses to promote the use of the Internet of Things (IoT), in which many more goods and services will function off the Internet.

LTE services, high-speed Internet access and websites based on IPv6 will be commercialized in all sectors.

The ministry said the transition from IPv4 to IPv6 is imperative as around 50 billion devices will be connected to the Internet in 2020. The current 4.3 billion IPv4 addresses cannot accommodate the 7 billion population worldwide, it said.

It will cost a total of 8.2 trillion won ($7.6 billion) to change the Internet protocols, including 6.1 trillion won already invested. Tax breaks have been revised to ease the burden on companies.

BY KIM JUNG-YOON [kjy@joongang.co.kr]



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