Bankruptcy court documents say Nortel put 666,624 IPv4 addresses up for sale last year, and Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) emerged as the winner this week, with a $7.5 million bid.
As Domain Incite notes, that's $11.25 per address, making the IPv4 address space theoretically worth around $48.3 billion.
Why this matters
As the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) ran out of IPv4 numbers, everybody liked to joke that a black market for addresses might pop up. "Black market" is a bit of a misnomer, given that the sales are done on the up-and-up, but the deal shows that if you've got enough addresses, you can find a buyer.
Here's more on the IPv4 apocalypse (and on Nortel's other pending selloffs).
- You Won't Find IPv4 Numbers on eBay
- Global IPv4 Counter Hits Zero
- Report: Most ISPs Are IPv6 Ready
- Cisco to Service Providers: Get Moving on IPv6
- IPv6 Prep Warnings Get More Urgent
- Nortel Patents Sale's Pending
— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading