Verisign predicts 1,000-1,500 new TLD applications and up to 2/3 .brand

Web could see a flood of .brand domain names.

There are a lot of new top level domain name service providers out there, and each has its own estimates on how many new TLD applications will be submitted next year.

Here are the numbers from Verisign: 1,000 to 1,500 applications and 2/3rds of them from brand owners.

This isn’t just another wild guess. Verisign runs the .com registry, so you can expect that many potential top level domain applicants have at least talked with the company about new TLDs.

Today I talked with Sarah Langstone, Director of Product Management at Verisign, about these predictions.

Langstone said that the numbers are extrapolated based on conversations the company has had with potential applicants. The company saw an upswing in inquiries as soon as ICANN formalized the date for the application window.

If you do the math on her estimates, we could potentially see 1,000 .brand applications.

Although Langstone isn’t overly surprised by the number of inquiries for .brand domains, she has been surprised by who they’re coming from.

“What I was surprised about were how many traditional bricks and mortar type firms were interested in applying for a new TLD,” she said. Some of the inquiries came from companies that don’t have a large online presence yet.

Langstone said that brands are saying they see marketing benefits in new TLDs: they can be shorter, more intuitive, and easier to remember. Some brands want to use them for partner or affiliate networks as a way to show that the partner is authentic.

However, she concedes that a lot of user education will be required to reap these benefits.

How many of the .brand TLDs will be used right away? Will companies go all in with their .brand? That remains to be seen. Langstone said a number of companies want to test .brand domains for market acceptance before deciding on a final plan of how to use it.

One thing is for sure. If .brand domains are successful, we’ll soon have a web of haves and have nots.


  1. says

    Sarah Langstone: “We’ve announced that we’re going to apply for internationalised domain name variants of .com and .net in languages that it makes sense for us to do so, so we’ve been doing quite a lot of work in getting ready for those applications.”

    IANA IDN Repository was recently updated by verisign:

    Based on this interview with Pat Kane it is understood “registrants of existing second level .com domains to be able to select .com transliterations to resolve.” and he also mentions: “you can expect .com equivalents in Japanese, Hangul, Chinese, Cyrillic, Arabic, and Hebrew.”

    Maybe Ms. Langstone can help further clarify how things will work for registrant, it will certainly help alleviate some of the existing confusion around the topic by many registrants and that is unfortunately also caused by accredited ICANN registrars.

  2. says

    One thing is for sure. If .brand domains are successful, we’ll soon have a web of haves and have nots.

    Yep. Sad really, it’s not like those leading discussions for new gTLDs didn’t know this would be a consequence of voting for ICANN’s proposal. I guess all those executive packages and share options just glittered too brightly.

    One of the fundamental reasons for the success of the Internet is the level playing field and the reduced cost of entry it provides for everyone.

    Creating “super leagues” or “walled gardens” for a handful of the most economically advantaged is rarely the best way forward over the longer term, and is more likely to damage and diminish the very innovation ICANN frequently claims it craves from new gTLDs.

  3. says

    Gonna be intresting.

    Verisign expects 1000-1500.
    Then we got all the others like M+M etc etc.

    And then we got ICANN who can do like 500 applications a year. And we not gonna have a lottery according to ICANN.

    Gonna be intresting 😀

  4. FarmerJohn says

    “Some of the inquiries came from companies that don’t have a large online presence yet.”

    And at this point (unless they’re some remarkable startup) likely they never will.

    But a ‘vanity’ gTLD will surely help seal their fate.


  5. says


    I don’t think ironic is the word I would use.

    Creating “walled gardens” or “super leagues” for some of the biggest companies isn’t a sensible approach and will more likely hinder the innovation that ICANN so often claims it craves.

    Many may not know how you work tirelessly for domain owners’ interests against ICANN and other players from their repeated attempts to change the DNS’s governance in ways which drain resources from ordinary registrants.

    I hope you are able to stick around to fight against the likely outcomes from the ill-conceived and fundamentally flawed new gTLD process, because the challenges for ordinary existing domain registrants are likely to significantly increase over the next couple of years as a direct result of the inequities the new gTLD program will introduce if implemented as is.

Leave a Reply