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  • Internal and external IP address and adoption of IPv6 by Indian cellular operators

    Are you confused regarding the Internal and external IP address issue? Ask our technical experts to help in clearing all doubts.

    My Cellular Operator IDEA IND in Mumbai assigns local(internal) IP addresses 100.x.x.x which gets transferred to its global(external) IP to access internet. Since this address range is not reserved for local networks can it result in address conflict with the actual external internet. Why don't they use something like 10.x.x.x or 172.16.x.x to 172.31.x.x instead? Also do cellular operator ISPs support IPv6? If they, then, are Android phones capable of using IPv6? Please explain.
  • Answers

    2 Answers found.
  • Let me start with a few lines explaining the difference between internal and external IP address:
    1. External IP address is what is used to access the World Wide Web - the Internet. That is why it is also known as the public network too.
    2. Internal IP address is what works within a closed network, an Intranet to be more precise. This can be a network within an organisation or like in your case, of your service provider.

    So, if your cellular service provider is using IP range which is not reserved for local networks, it doesn't matter! This is because the IP address are being used within the Idea network only and so Idea is the sole administrator here who has to take care that there is no IP conflict. No other cellular service provider is going to access this Intranet.

    As far as adoption of IPv6 by cellular operators in India is considered, the rate of adoption is 9% till December, 2016 according to Google statistics. Presently, in the category or wireless cellular service providers, only Reliance Jio is IPv6 enabled and provides service on the dual stack of IPv4 and IPv6.

  • IP Address ranges are allocated on the basis of the network. For example, Intranets are given a specific range of IPs and the devices connected are identified based on that range. These IPs fall under the umbrella of Internal IP address. And the intranet host that connects to the Internet itself is making use of the external IP range.

    IPV4 and IPV6 both can be in use by the internal and the external IPs. However, it is up to the network be it ISP or the telecom provider to allocate these IPs. Considering the current 3G adaption by the telecom service provider, the IPV4 IP ranges are yet to be replaced by the existing telecom companies in India. And considering the upgrade that may cost them money. They may go for the dual stack for IPV4 and IPV6.

    Considering the IP ranges regardless of the IPV4 and IPV6 alloted to each machine in a unique way, there is never going to be any IP address conflict by two different customers under same IP range. If any such contention does happen, it can be rectified by the telecom operators.

    There is no practical benefit for telecom as far as an upgrade to the IPV6 is concerned. So a lot of telecom companies are yet to upgrade their stack with the IPV6. However as every tower in the country gets upgraded for 4G, you may find that devices currently still making use of the IPV4.

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