There are several companies out there with one or more /8 IP addresses, for example:
- DoD has more than 200 million,
- HP has one /8 (>16 million),
- Apple has one /8,
- General Electric has one /8,
- IBM has one /8,
- MIT has one /8,
- Xerox has one /8,
- many many others
Obviously these companies don't use all of the allocated IP addresses for them, especially DoD. As you can already know by now, IANA don't have any address at its disposal, and even most of the RIRs already run out of IP addresses allocated for them by IANA.
As one of the mitigation methods to extend the life time of IPv4 addresses as recommended by IANA is to request these unused IP addresses on the hand of the aforementioned companies. But still almost all of them are not willing to return them. Even instead of returning, the DoD has gave control of more than 170 million IP addresses at its disposal to a private company for God knows the reason hours before Biden takes the office.
I've two questions though:
- Why on earth these companies don't want to return the unused IP addresses?
- How long will it take to replace IPv4 with IPv6? Its already more than 20 years since IPv6 came.
Last, but not least (even if it is opinion based), what do you think will happen if we completely run out of IPv4 address before full transition to IPv6? It is 100% obvious that we will soon out of addresses based on the current growth of the Internet, not to mention the introduction of emerging technologies.