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New gTLDs Are Coming: Get Ready!

February 5, 2014

The Internet is expanding with the launch of over 200 new Generic Top Level Domains (gTLD’s) in the coming months and potentially up to 2,000 over the next few years. As the Sunrise period for some of these domains has already opened, we thought this might be a good time to bring this major change in the Internet to your attention.

What are gTLDs?

Generic Top Level Domains (gTLDs) are the group of domains with the suffix at the end that does not have a country designation, for example .com and .net. These differ from Country Code Top Level Domains (ccTLDs), which are generally designated to a country e.g. .nz or .uk.  You can find more about TLD’s on our last blog post about the change to the .nz namespace.

Why are they being released?

The new gTLD program was developed to increase competition and space in the domain name space. For example Jim wants to register a domain name for his construction company but finds that jimsconstruction.com has already been registered by someone else – a familiar story. Well now applicants will have the opportunity to register in any one of hundreds on new gTLDs – for Jim, this might be jims.construction or jim.builder or for a coffee company, webrew.coffee.

A list of all the currently proposed new extensions can be found here.

How is the release being managed?

Each new gTLD domain name will have a different release date over the next year or two. For every new gTLD extension there are at least two to three stages in the release period:

Sunrise Period:

This is required for all new gTLDs and is the first launch phase. During the Sunrise Period only trademark holders that have successfully lodged their trademarks through the Trademark Clearinghouse can apply for new domains based on the trademarks they hold.

Landrush Period (also called Early Bird or Early Access phase):

While not all new gTLDs will have this phase, this will be common for some of the more popular new gTLDS. The rules used to manage the release will vary from Registrar to Registrar.

General Availability:

This final phase of the launch process is when the domain name becomes available for anybody to register. Domains are sold on the first-come-first-served basis that we are accustomed to.

What will they cost?

Although prices are expected to vary considerably by gTLD, early indications are that pre-registration for ‘run of the mill’ is likely to be in the $200 to $250 + GST per domain range plus a $59 + GST per annum registration fee per domain.

What next?

If you would like to know more about what gTLD’s are being released or would like to pre-register yourself, our friends over at Freeparking have put together a great little section on their website.

Apex will not be handling Registrations for any of the new gTLD’s directly, but we are more than happy to assist any of our existing clients in pre-registering their interest in a domain name. Please contact your Business Development Manager for further information or support.

 

 

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Filed under Design & Development

Written by

David founded Apex back in 1997. He has a Bachelors Degree from Auckland University and a post Graduate Diploma in Operations Management. As Managing Director David's role is incredibly varied but tends to focus mainly on technical issues that crop up from time to time around Server Admin, Network Management and Email and Domain related events.

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