Uniregistry’s new TLD launch plans are different from the others
Uniregistry plans a more inclusive sunrise, no landrush, and simpler pricing.
Frank Schilling’s Uniregistry is taking a very different approach to launching its domain names than most other registries.
Rather than squeeze out every last drop of revenue possible from launch phases, it’s doing what it can to push its domains into the hands of registrants. That’s according to launch documents it has filed with ICANN as well as public statements Frank Schilling has made.
Uniregistry has expanded its sunrise to cover more than just the domain names mandated by ICANN.
The ICANN rules only apply to what’s left of the dot. Under general policies if you have a trademark on “Merry Christmas” you can make a sunrise claim on MerryChristmas.Christmas but not Merry.Christmas.
Uniregistry is expanding this to offer “spanning the dot” trademark claims. In the above example, the trademark holder could make a sunrise claim for Merry.Christmas.
Landrush is the time that most registries try to squeeze extra revenue out of domain names. Sandwiched between sunrise and general availability, costs are typically high. Multiple requests for the same domain might go to auction. There has been some “innovation” in this space for new TLDs. Donuts, for example, has a short “Early Access Program.” But the idea behind all of these is similar: get more money for domains from those who want them early.
Uniregistry is skipping this and going straight to general availability.
Many registries are holding back premium domain names to sell for high prices. Others are introducing variable pricing that means any good domain name will cost much more than the (now standard) $25-$50 prices.
Based on comments Frank Schilling made during his keynote at NamesCon, this doesn’t seem to be the case for Uniregistry domain names. The registry will hold some domains back, but not with the intention of selling them to the highest bidder later.
Instead, almost all domain names will be available on a first-come, first-served basis at regular prices.
This is why Uniregistry’s domain names will be more appealing to domain investors. There will be more potential for margin in flipping the domain names.
It’s also why I think Top Level Domain Holdings will end up speculating in a lot of Uniregistry’s domain names.
TLDH plans to apply its own premium name pricing calculations to other registries’ domains and acquire ones that it thinks the registries have underpriced. With Uniregistry’s even pricing model, that will likely apply to a lot of its domain names.