The availability of IPv4 addresses in different parts of the world will determine the pace of IPv6's rollout, according to Christian Jacquenet, head of France Télécom's IPv6 program. For example, Poland will start using the protocol as soon as next year, because that is what the IPv4 address depletion forecast calls for. At the other end of the spectrum, France won't start using it until the first half of 2014, Jacquenet said. The size of the French market also means it is going to take longer to deploy IPv6.
The operator is also conducting a number of field trials in Africa, said Jacquenet.
The introduction of IPv6 will act as a business catalyst in mobile data services and machine-to-machine communications, due to the almost unlimited availability of addresses and self-configuration capabilities, according to operators.
(IDG News Senior U.S. correspondent Stephen Lawson in San Francisco contributed to this report.)
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