China plans to put the Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6)-based network into large-scale use, to boost the development of the Internet industry.
The country aims to have 200 million active users of IPv6 by the end of 2018, while the number will exceed 500 million by 2020, according to an action plan issued by the general offices of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and the State Council.
By the end of 2025, network, applications and terminal devices will fully support the adoption of IPv6 in China, and it will have the largest number of IPv6 users in the world, according to the plan.
Computers, mobile phones, electronic devices and sensors that are connected to the Internet need a unique Internet Protocol address to identify themselves and communicate with each other.
The addresses used predominantly on the Internet are based on a communication standard known as IPv4, whose supply of addresses is running out.
The IPv6 network, first developed in the 1990s in China, allows a much higher theoretical limit on the number of IP addresses than the current IPv4 system.