Survey: Transition to IPv6 will spur industry

Industry believes that the federal government’s transition to IPv6 will significantly speed the development of related commercial products and services, according to a new survey.

About 67 percent of nearly 300 survey respondents from the private sector said they would invest in advancing their IPv6-related products, according to the Second Annual IPv6 Government Action Study by Juniper Networks, released today. Furthermore, about a third of them said the mandated transition would significantly accelerate the pace.

The survey found that the transition will increase the knowledge base of the new protocol and influence the maturity of related products. The transition to IPv6 depends on the industry’s willingness to produce capable products and services, such as network infrastructures and applications, according to the report accompanying the survey.

“We think industry sees a market, and they’re ready to move forward,” said Chuck Lynch, co-founder and senior partner at SynExi, a technology consulting firm based in Fairfax, Va., which worked on the survey.

Experts said neither the government nor industry had the motivation to invest in the next generation of IPs. The government had no products with which to build their network backbones, and industry had no economic reason to develop the technology.

But now, agencies are looking to invest in IPv6-capable products.

Juniper’s survey found that 30 percent of 784 federal, state and local government officials said the transition to IPv6 will influence their information technology purchasing decisions, which applies to $39 billion in IPv6 transition spending. That jumps to 44 percent of government officials and an estimated $62 billion for fiscal 2008. The dollar figures are based on Input’s federal, state and local IT funding forecasts.

IPv6 IT purchases in fiscal 2007 and 2008 likely will focus on training, testing and engineering services and production equipment, said Peter Tseronis, director of network services at the Education Department and co-chairman of the CIO Council’s IPv6 Working Group.

“It is not surprising that IPv6 is playing such a significant role in IT purchasing decisions,” Tseronis said. The Office of Management and Budget has required the transition from IPv4 to IPv6 by June 2008.

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