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The IoT’s role in the depletion of IPv4s

At this point in time, it isn’t far fetched to say that a majority of the devices on earth are dependent on the internet. Televisions, lamps, home lights, and a lot more. They are all objects that are interconnected through a network that gathers data and more, this is called the Internet of Things, also known as IoT. To do this, these objects need an IP address, and the one we use the most is IP version 4. In the 1980s, over 4 billion IPv4s were distributed for free. At the time, it was hoped that those addresses would last a lot longer than they did, but then they didn’t. In this blog, we’ll explain what role the Internet of Things had in the depletion of IPv4 addresses.

What is the Internet of Things?

The Internet of Things is a network of physical objects that have technologies such as sensors, software, and more in order for them to connect and exchange data using the internet. If you have a desk lamp that can change colors using an app on your phone, that lamp is part of the Internet of Things. There are so many devices that are part of the IoT and the number of those devices has been growing since the start of the internet. 

How did the IoT help accelerate IPv4s depletion?

The devices part of the Internet of Things all are able to collect, exchange, and share data using the internet. They use sensors and other technologies to be able to do that but to be able to connect to the internet to do all of those things, each device needs a unique IP address. Because the devices part of the IoT was growing so rapidly, 4 billion IPv4 addresses quickly became a number that wasn’t going to cut it. 

What now?

There’s no stopping the Internet of Things from growing further, however, the successor of IPv4 which is IPv6 will have more than enough space for a long time. Though, because IPv6 isn’t able to be used by everyone yet, IPv4 is still in high demand. People and organizations are choosing to sell IPv4 addresses and they are flying off of the metaphorical shelves. Sooner or later we will all be fully transitioned to using IPv6, ironically though, in order to do that IPv4  will need to be used to bridge the gap.