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ICANN reveals new web domain expansion


ICANN released new web address endings that can help produce infinite web domain names.


Stephen Shugerman

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the nonprofit organization that manages web domain names, unveiled some 2,000 applications for new web address endings on Wednesday.

Right now there are just 22 generic Top-Level Domains, or gTLDs, in use, including .com.

The California-based ICANN told AFP the huge expansion of the Internet means the new names are essential.

A total of 911 organizations from North America paid the $185,000 fee to simply apply for a custom web address ending, along with 675 from Europe and 303 from the Asia-Pacific region.

"The Internet is about to change forever. We're standing at the cusp of a new era in online innovation," Rod Beckstrom, president and CEO of (ICANN), said during a press conference in London.

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According to PC Mag, several high-end internet companies applied for new gTLDs including Apple, who applied for .apple. Samsung also sought to secure .samsung and another for its name in Korean characters.

Google led the pack with the most applications, which they filed for under the name Charleston Road Registry.

"By opening up more choices for Internet domain names, we hope people will find options for more diverse—and perhaps shorter—signposts in cyberspace," Google's chief Internet evangelist, Vint Cerf, told PC Mag. 

Another new outcome of the domain release is, ICANN and will now allow non-Latin alphabets to be used far more extensively. There have been 116 applications for such addresses, according to the Telegraph.

Bhavin Turakhia, founder and CEO of India-based registrar Directi Group, is skeptical of the new web address boom, saying she doesn't think anything will overtake .com in the near future. Turakhia told CNN Money, "I wouldn't completely rule it out, but .com has been around for 27 years. It's the de facto standard."