On June 20, 2018, Alibaba Cloud announced that it would provide full IPv6 network services jointly with the three major carriers in China. Alibaba Cloud expects to implement an "IPv6 only" Internet in China by 2025. Alibaba Cloud is currently the only cloud vendor that fully provides IPv6 network services in China.
As a technology base for next-generation Internet, IPv6 has significant influence over the development of new industries, such as the Internet of Things (IoT), Internet of Vehicles (IoV), and artificial intelligence (AI).
Alibaba Cloud has already deployed IPv6 technologies to cover the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia. Alibaba Cloud has provided Youku, a video hosting service in China, with IPv6-based HD live broadcasting service for the event. With this technology, Youku can offer smooth and stable live streaming experience to the millions of audiences in China.
"By 2025, we will help all customers transition to IPv6 only, promoting the evolution of the Internet to the next generation in China," said Jiang Jiangwei, Director of Technology R&D in Alibaba Cloud.
A complete IPv6 chain, from applications and terminals to pipelines and cloud services, requires efforts of all involved industries. Alibaba Cloud is now cooperating closely with China Telecom, China Mobile, China Unicom, and CERNET, fully pushing through the "cloud–pipelines–terminals" chain. In this way, IPv6 network services are supported by user terminals, carriers' networks, and applications on the cloud.
Wu Hequan, an academic at the Chinese Academy of Engineering, attended the press conference. He said, "China is probably the country with most need for IPv6 technology. All parties should work together to promote the full deployment of IPv6 networks. Cloud service providers, represented by Alibaba Cloud, will become an important force in promoting the development of IPv6 technology."
Chen Jiachun, an Inspector of the Department of Information and Communications Development of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), also attended the press conference. He said, "As a leading company in cloud computing in China, Alibaba Cloud's full support for IPv6 can drive more Internet applications and users to migrate to IPv6 networks. Alibaba Cloud will make greater contributions to China's IPv6 development."
Statistics shows that the number of IPv4 addresses per Chinese web user was only 0.45 by the end of 2017. The depletion of IPv4 addresses has resulted in a surge in demand for IPv6 network services by developers. Additionally, the explosive development of IoT boosts demands for tens of billions of connections.
The greatest advantage of IPv6 technology is having an almost infinite address space, even sufficient for one IP address for every sand on the earth. In addition, the anti-interference, privacy, and security performance are better than its previous generation. With easier management and lower cost, IPv6 technology will be able to satisfy the construction needs of 5G networks and IoT.
In May 2018, China's MIIT issued a notice on the implementation of the Action Plan for Promoting the Scale Deployment of Internet Protocol Version 6 (IPv6), aiming to implement the IPv6 action plan from six aspects. In the notice, MIIT clearly stated that by the end of 2018, cloud service platforms, represented by Alibaba Cloud, shall complete the transformation on 50% cloud products, and the number of IPv6 mobile Internet users shall reach at least 50 million nation wide.
Alibaba Cloud has become a key force in promoting China's Internet upgrade. At present, Alibaba Cloud's market share has exceeded the total market share of the other four of the top five market share holders in China's public cloud market. In China, 40% of websites are running on Alibaba Cloud, and 50% of unicorn companies are using Alibaba Cloud.
Alibaba Cloud provides enterprises with a one-stop solution for rapid IPv6 transformation. With Alibaba Cloud, you can complete IPv6 transformation for business systems in just a few minutes without interrupting business continuity. On the contrary, IPv6 upgrade on an enterprise's own private data center usually takes a long time and is costly, not to mention the technological difficulties and unreliable quality.
According to Cai Yiqun, Vice President of Alibaba Group, Alibaba has started equipment selection for IPv6 network R&D since the official launch of the global IPv6 network in 2012. Alibaba has now completed the full transformation of the IPv6 upgrade route, with the highest speed of IPv6 forwarding being 400 Gbps. This is 2.5 times of the current commercial performance in the industry.
The introduction of IPv6 demonstrates Alibaba Cloud's continuous leadership in industrial innovation. Alibaba Cloud has helped enterprises and organizations transform traditional networks into new generation networks. With products such as VPC and CEN, Alibaba Cloud is constantly innovating new, cutting-edge products to be at the forefront of technology.
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