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Over 7.5 million new domain names registered in the first quarter

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July 16, 2012

According to Verisign, the overall number of newly registered domain names on the web increased by over 7.5 million to stand at 233.1 million in the first quarter of 2012. Verisign also found that the internet address universe grew by about 11 percent year-on-year and 3.3 percent sequentially in the first quarter.

Verisign's own registry of .com and .net domains also increased slightly, at 2.5 percent sequentially and 8.1 percent year-over-year, to stand at a combined total of 116.7 million domains at the end of March 2012.

Verisign estimates in its latest Domain Name Industry Brief that about 88 percent of all registered .com and .net domains resolve to an active website. About 17 percent were one-page sites and 69 percent had multiple-page websites.

Country-code top-level domains (ccTLD) grew even faster, fueled in part by the fact that the company started gathering average statistics on domains in non-Latin scripts for the first time.

For its part, ICANN has approved about 30 such segments since it kicked off its IDN ccTLD fast-track program in 2009, and these registries contributed a little over 808,960 names to the first quarter total, Verisign added.

However, the overall vast majority of those domain names are likely to have been found in .??, the Russian Federation's wildly popular Cyrillic alternative to .ru, which currently reports more than 811,000 domain registrations.

The United Kingdom's own registry was still the second-largest ccTLD after Germany's .de at the end of the quarter, with more than 10 million domains, according to the report.

In third place was the rapidly growing .tk space, which represents the tiny island nation of Tokelau and gives it domains away for free. As a result it's favoured by abusive web players.

In other IT news

A recent announcement by Oracle of its intention to acquire social media site Involver could be a sign of where the medium for business is headed. Or is it?

A post from Involver CEO Don Beck on the company’s blog places Oracle's proposed acquisition into perspective. “The proliferation of social media has changed the way that companies, organizations and consumers interact,” Beck suggests.

Oracle’s own announcement of this proposed acquisition signifies the importance that the database and software behemoth places in social media, not just for simple marketing, but for increasing brand loyalty, connecting with potential customers, and anticipating buyers’ needs.

The planned partnership between Oracle and Involver can be seen from another perspective as well. The alliance could combine Involver’s social media tools with the broader menu of Oracle cloud solutions, including more social options from previous acquisitions.

To be sure, Involver isn’t the first social media acquisition for Oracle, a company that is clearly attempting to increase social offerings as part of its online business services.

In May for example, the company announced the acquisition of social media company Virtue for $300 million, followed by another acquisition, this time of Collective Intellect, a firm specializing in social analytics.

Oracle isn’t the only online business software provider to be on a shopping spree for companies with social media capabilities. recently announced the acquisition of Nova Scotia-based startup Go Instant, which allows people in different locations to easily browse Websites together.

As part of an increasing effort not just to create social media tools but also to measure the influence of the brands that use them, Los Angeles incubator Science Inc has announced the purchase of the Indian-based company PinPuff, which tracks the various influence of users on Pinterest and rewards them accordingly.

So it appears that Oracle is going in the direction of social media in a big way. We will see how this proposed acquisition goes, and maybe it will entice other IT companies to do the same.

In other IT news

Microsoft has unveiled its licensing terms for its new Windows Server 2012 OS, cutting down to four versions and ending the Home and Small Business Server options.

Microsoft says "Windows Server 2012 delivers a dramatically simplified licensing experience. Shaped by feedback from customers and partners, the new Windows Server 2012 licensing terms will help make choosing the right Windows Server easier while delivering the following benefits."

Microsoft says that those benefits will come in four flavors: Datacenter, Standard Edition, Essentials, and Foundation, all with similar levels of functionality but with differing support levels for virtualization and cloud environments.

Microsoft is also switching to a per-processor pricing model, with one license covering two processors and more options based on the number of virtual machines being run on the server.

The software giant also suggests that less is more in server builds. The popular Small Business Server and Home Server editions are being folded into the Essentials build (Foundation is for OEMs only), and the current high performance computing edition is being replaced with the Enterprise and Standard builds and supported with a free HPC Pack 2012.

No final release dates have been given for any versions of the new operating system, but it is widely expected to launch concurrently with Windows 8 client edition before the end of 2012.

Source: Verisign.

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