Slowly, ever so slowly, IPv6 adoption is starting to gain momentum, but we need to start moving to it before mobile devices and the Internet of Things leaves us scrambling for the last few IPv4 Internet addresses.
Akamai explained that while this may be the first time in the Internet's history that the global unique Internet Protocol (IP) address count declined, it's still only a decrease of less than one percent. Akamai's analysts suggest that this reduction "may be indicative of more providers implementing carrier-grade network address translation (CGN) solutions in an effort to conserve limited IPv4 address space, or more likely, increased support for and availability of IPv6 connectivity among leading network service providers."
If you look at the overall trend, we're still quickly running out of IPv4 addresses. The American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN) announced in April that it's down to its last lot of of old-style IPv4 addresses. At this point, the best estimate has ARIN exhausting its pool of IPv4 addresses on March 22, 2015. In the meantime, Europe, Latin America, and Asia have already emptied their pools. Only Africa has any significant number of IPv4 addresses left.
Still, HE reports that IPv6 traffic amounts to just over four percent of global IP traffic. It won't stay that low for much longer. The ever-increasing demand for Internet addresses combined with the last drops of the IPv4 address pool draining out dictates that the need for IPv6 addresses must increase.
You might think that you can get by without moving to IPv6. You'd be wrong. As Akamai put it, "redistributing increasingly small blocks of IPv4 address space is not a sustainable way to grow the Internet. IPv6 deployment is a requirement for any network that needs to survive.”
What's currently driving the demand for more Internet addresses is the vast increase in mobile devices. Look around you. Besides your computer, do you have a tablet? A smartphone? On your person and desk alone you probably need three times the IP addresses you did five years ago. Multiply by a world population that's taking to mobile computing devices like ducks to water and you can see why you need to start moving to IPv6 now instead of keeping it on a perpetual back-burner.