I've read that there are 2 types of IPv4 addresses: public ip-address and private ip-address.

Public ip is used to connect devices to the internet (WAN). There's always an example about routers that have that type of ip and provide access to the internet.

Private ip is used to connect devices between each other in LAN. It's internal ip. And there's always an example on the internet about devices that belong to the internal network.

That's quite understable, but what about other devices that have access to the internet without router? Mobile web. Is there some big router that provides our devices public ip addresses? I mean, router that belongs to mobile internet provider.

  • 2
    "I've read that there are 2 types of IPv4 addresses: public ip-address and private ip-address." That is incorrect. IPv4 makes no distinction between public and private addresses. The ISPs have agreed to not forward packets with addresses in certain ranges, and those are called private addresses. There are various ranges of IPv4 addresses that IPv4 recognizes as different address types, e.g. link-local, multicast, reserved, etc. See iana.org/assignments/iana-ipv4-special-registry/…
    – Ron Maupin
    Mar 23, 2022 at 10:23

1 Answer 1


Many mobile providers use private IP addresses for their clients and connect them to the public Internet through a large, carrier-grade NAT service. The reason is the exhaustion of the IPv4 addressing space and the subsequently increasing prices for obtaining such addresses.

From the network perspective, mobile or stationary clients make no difference. xDSL clients are also increasingly provided with private or DS-Lite IPv4 addresses and NATed via the provider network.

The IPv4 situation is not expected to improve. The only long-term solution is to migrate to IPv6.

  • How common is ipv6 today? I suppose it uses the same NAT service, for example, for mobile internet
    – Ivan
    Mar 23, 2022 at 12:10
  • IPv6 should slowly be available everywhere. IPv6 doesn't use NAT, there's simply no need to with 3.4 x 10^38 addresses.
    – Zac67
    Mar 23, 2022 at 13:04
  • IPv6 has overtaken IPv4 in a couple of countries, and is on the way to doing so in many others. See akamai.com/visualizations/state-of-the-internet-report/… for country by country adoption rates. Mar 25, 2022 at 18:21

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