Verizon has begun testing Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6) on its FiOS network.
Because both IPv4 and IPv6 will be in use during the expected lengthy transition period, network-connected equipment and network operating systems must be able to handle both protocols.
"The FiOS trial is a key step toward enabling IPv6 in our core network, on edge routers and on CPE," said Jean McManus, executive director, packet network technology for Verizon, in a statement.
Verizon’s month-long trial of IPv6 involves FiOS-enabled customer homes with customized CPE – provided by Verizon – that can support both IPv6 and IPv4. The dual protocol setup will also be implemented on Verizon’s edge gateway routers. Verizon employs 6PE technology, which uses IPv6-provider edge routers to connect across the company’s IPv4 MPLS core. The IPv6 traffic is then sent over IPv6-capable peering connections.
A key advantage of IPv6, McManus said, is that a customer’s home router would no longer require network address translation (NAT), which makes it possible for a single public Internet address to be translated into many private IP addresses to accommodate multiple IP-enabled devices inside the home. IPv6 allows each device to have its own public address. This streamlining of the home environment will allow for more innovation in services to occur.
Verizon Wireless is also implementing IPv6 in its evolved packet core that will be supporting the Long Term Evolution (LTE) deployment.