IPv6 CoE Blog

How I Did With My IPv6 2016 Predictions

In January I published my IPv6 Predictions for 2016 which you can find here:



You can read the article if you want but in summary, I said that 2016 was going to likely see the following things happen:

  1. The IPv6 adoption rate would continue to grow, both worldwide and in the US
  2. IPv6 growth worldwide would outpace the US
  3. Major public cloud providers would support IPv6 (Amazon, Microsoft, and Google)
  4. Security products would pick up the pace of supporting IPv6 in more meaningful ways
  5. Enterprises would finally dip their toes into the water of learning and testing IPv6


So how did I do? Let’s dig in and see…


That the IPv6 adoption rate would continue to grow came true but I don’t think that one was particularly difficult to call. I also want to call out a small nuance in this prediction too. In the article I pointed out that the growth worldwide reported by Google went from 5% to 10%. It seems things are still growing worldwide but the rate of growth has actually declined. We went from 10% to 15% in 2016 as shown below. So the overall number of people using IPv6 increased but the rate year over year has slowed from 2 times to 1.5 times. It is a bit early to see a decline like that but 2016 has been a pretty weird year overall and I think some other factors may impact or change this for 2017. Specifically, around the public cloud adoption and support of IPv6.


google stats 2016.png


The US continued to grow but also declined in the rate of growth, which was a bit unexpected. Previously it was reported at 25% and now stands at 30% overall.


google stats US 2016.png


Don’t get me wrong, almost a third of the US is using IPv6 to access Google, so I think the argument that IPv6 isn’t important to your business strategy to reach a US market is now moot. But, I think I can claim a win for this first prediction if you view the overall adoption numbers.


My second prediction was that IPv6 growth outside the US would outpace the US and boy, was I right about that one! Some examples stand out: The United Kingdom went from 1% adoption to 16%, Greece went from 20% to 28.5%, Canada was 7% to 17.5%, Estonia was 9% to 16%, and most impressive in terms of population impacted was India which went from effectively 0% to 10% (with a total population of 1.3 billion people that means they added 133 million IPv6 users in 2016). There are still very large population areas like China and Russia that have little to no public IPv6 adoption but I hope to see major improvements for those countries in 2017. The best site to see user stats in an easy to consume format is http://6lab.cisco.com/ (select “World Maps” and then select the “Users” display option. This site is super-useful for understanding IPv6 user, peering and other adoption data. Many thanks to Alain Fiocco for putting all that great data together.


My third prediction was that major public cloud providers would get IPv6 support. I got this one right, I believe, with a minor caveat.

Amazon (AWS) announced several things around IPv6 support. The most recent was that EC2 in VPC would have IPv6 support. Earlier this year Amazon announced IPv6 support for WAF and CloudFront.

as well as for S3.


Microsoft Azure also announced IPv6 support for Virtual Machines (VMs) in Azure and IPv6 for load balancers.


Google Compute Platform and Compute Engine have a bit of catch up to do in the IPv6 area. If you read the networking documentation it is clear that IPv6 isn’t supported at all but the Google App Engine has had IPv6 support for a while (2010 actually). I hope that Google adds comprehensive IPv6 support for GCP/GCE in 2017 as it would round out the major public cloud providers.


The fourth prediction was that security products would increase adoption and support of IPv6 in some meaningful ways. I think you can see from Scott Hogg’s articles like https://community.infoblox.com/t5/IPv6-Center-of-Excellence/IPv6-Security-Vulnerability-Scanning/ba-... and https://community.infoblox.com/t5/IPv6-Center-of-Excellence/Could-SD-WAN-Change-IPv6-Adoption-in-Ent... that the networking and security market are indeed doing this to address needs from their customers. I don’t think the security market around IPv6 grew significantly enough to be anything other than a “me too” scenario but that seems to be the status quo until something bad happens.


My last prediction was that Enterprises would finally start looking into adopting IPv6. Unfortunately, I think this one did not come true from the anecdotal evidence I have gathered from my IPv6 colleagues there is little to no movement in this area. While disappointing, it is not all together all that surprising. Until IPv6 becomes a key method for customers, employees and partners to gain access to Enterprise resources I don’t think much will change.


So in summary, I think I managed to get 3/5 correct, with another being a neutral and another being a miss. This leaves me a bit of room to have some fun with my 2017 IPv6 predictions!


You can find me on twitter as @ehorley and remember…

IPv6 is the future and the future is now!

- Ed


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