According to the latest Domain Name Industry Brief by VeriSign, Inc., more than six million domain names were added to the Internet in the fourth quarter of 2012, bringing the total number of registered domain names to more than 252 million worldwide across all top-level domains (TLDs) as of Dec. 31, 2012.
The increase of 6.1 million domain names globally equates to a growth rate of 2.5 percent over the third quarter of 2012, and marks the eighth straight quarter with greater than 2 percent growth. Worldwide registrations have grown by 26.6 million, or 11.8 percent, year over year.
As per the report, the .com and .net TLDs experienced aggregate growth in the fourth quarter of 2012, reaching a combined total of approximately 121.1 million domain names in the adjusted zone for .com and .net. This represents a 6.4 percent increase year over year. As of Dec. 31, 2012, the base of registered names in .com equaled 106.2 million names, while .net equaled 14.9 million names.
The report revealed that new .com and .net registrations totaled 8.0 million during the fourth quarter of 2012. In the fourth quarter of 2011, new .com and .net registrations totaled 7.9 million. The .com and .net renewal rate for the fourth quarter of 2012 was 72.9 percent, up slightly from 72.5 percent for the third quarter of 2012.
According to the report, during the fourth quarter of 2012, Verisign’s average daily Domain Name System (DNS) query load was 77 billion, across all TLDs operated by Verisign, with a peak of 123 billion. Compared to the previous quarter, the daily average increased 16 percent and the peak increased 20.4 percent. Year over year, the daily average increased 21.5 percent and the peak increased 5.3 percent.