Network World reports that “unprecedented levels of broadband adoption in the Asia-Pacific region” is depleting the free pool of IPv4 addresses faster than anticipated. It also states that “The acceleration of IPv4 address depletion is putting more pressure on network operators to migrate to IPv6, the long-anticipated upgrade to IPv4, the Internet's main communications protocol.” Both statements are questionable.
True, there is strong evidence of acceleration in the rate of IPv4 depletion. But it may not be accurate to portray this as a product of some sudden, unrelated trend toward broadband adoption in a specific region. It may, in fact, be the beginning phases in the enactment of a tragedy of the commons. As we near IPv4 depletion, it makes sense for users and the RIRs both to build up stockpiles of IPv4 address blocks before they are claimed by other regions. The Asia-Pacific region contains large developing economies (China, India, etc.) that are historically underserved in terms of address resource occupation. As the pool of ipv4 addresses drains down, it would make perfect sense for APNIC to claim as many resources as it possibly good, and to deliver more to their restive members. That could trigger similar, reactive moves by other RIRs. If this is true, give the first-mover advantage to APNIC and look for acceleration from other regions.
And when it comes to IPv6 adoption, the article repeats the tired and increasingly questionable view that ipv4 depletion will automatically push everyone into IPv6 migration. In fact, a sudden acceleration of demand for IPv4 is not consistent with the article's claim that we are on our way to IPv6. It indicates almost exactly the opposite. If serious efforts to switch to ipv6 were in play at this time, there would be no tendency for RIRs or users to grab as many v4 addresses as possible in the short term. They would, instead, view the depletion as a fait accompli and would be implementing plans that would decrease their need for IPv4 addresses. The sudden attempt to grab as many ipv4 addresses as possible indicates that companies either are not ready to, or are not interested in, staking their internet presence on ipv6.