Since the birth of the world's first .com top-level domain in 1985, this terminal application service has been attached to the computer to destroy the trend of transformation and become a wave of waves under the Internet wave, although it is not enough to carry the sky. The power of moving ground can never endure. To this day, it is still a very attractive area.
The reason is that the overnight richness of the sky-price domain name has given too many people imagination, and a maniac gambler psychology has given too many people an incentive to bet. But from conservative to fanatic, and then from fanatic to rational, this cyclical process not only accumulates a large number of registered domain names, but also reveals many crises in the domain name investment industry.
As one of the fastest-growing intangible assets, although domain names have also received much attention under the change of Internet technology innovations, there is a current situation that has to be faced with. The domain name investment industry has already become so busy and burdened. The tone of the bad domain name even became the main theme of Internet public opinion.
As we all know, the popularity of a domain name is often linked to the hotspots of the Internet for a certain period of time. In other words, under the current state of the domain name, new growth points are urgently needed to break the silence that lasted from last year to the present. This growth point is likely to be artificial intelligence. Because whether from the current focus of innovation or future technology applications, artificial intelligence will undoubtedly be the most mainstream research target in the next few decades. And in the new year, artificial intelligence may become the biggest vent.
You will never miss any hot domain name circle, and will inevitably make efforts in the domain name of artificial intelligence. Coincidentally, in the domain name market, there is a .ai domain name with the meaning of artificial intelligence. Although this was originally a domain name suffix of a small country in the Western Indian Ocean Islands, the significance of artificial intelligence has now become completely different. So, can AI become the next domain name superpowered by the disruptive productivity of artificial intelligence?
There are many problems behind the scenery, and the domain name industry urgently needs new growth points
According to the "Internet Domain Name Development and Management Report (2016)" released by the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology, the number of global domain name registrations increased year by year from 2008 to 2015, but the growth rate fluctuated greatly and basically showed a decline for two consecutive years or rising trend. Among them, the number of global domain name registrations changed in 2015 and successfully achieved a growth rate of 9%. This situation is largely due to the popularity of China's domain name investment and transactions in 2015. In this year, rice farmers enjoyed a good harvest and the market was active. , Like a bull market state.
But there is no doubt that the upsurge often brings the trouble of the industry bubble. After the prosperity, it is more a new round of silence and cooling.
This reflects the biggest actual situation in 2016. Although all kinds of unheard of new top-level domain names took advantage of this outlet to cradle money to occupy land, they did not generate centralized domain name suffixes such as .top and .wang. And very few domain name transaction amounts are born. That is to say, from the beginning of last year's adjustment of domain name investment and transactions, some of the domain names seized by Minong at high prices are likely to become hot potato.
Phased changes and centralized investment are the main characteristics of domain name registration and trading, but the reason for the embarrassing situation after the blast is actually related to the problems exposed in the development process.
One is the scarcity of quality resources. According to data compiled by DN Journal integrating multiple domain name trading platforms around the world, the price range of high-priced domain names has been stable for many years, but since 2014, the highest and lowest transaction prices have gradually increased, and the gap between the two has widened. In 2015, the highest and lowest transaction prices reached the highest in five years. From the number of domain names in different price ranges, the number of 100,000 to 500,000 domain names is close to 90%, which reflects that the quality domain names are becoming scarce and the average price trend is gradually decreasing. If you push it backward for several decades, it is likely to reach a tipping point, when the high-quality and slightly potential are exhausted, it will be difficult to explore new markets.
The second is that the application rate of China's domain name market is low, less than 18%, which is very different from foreign countries. This reflects from the side that most of the domain name owners in our country are domain name investors. They do not register a domain name to establish a website or provide network services, but simply to earn a high price difference. However, the excessively low application rate means that domain name investors will accumulate a large number of domain names, which will increase investment risks.
The third is the impact of the mobile Internet, the value of the domain name entry is decreasing. For those who will eventually use the Internet, the significance of the domain name system is to give purely numeric IP addresses an easily recognizable name, which changes from numbers to text. However, the rise of the mobile Internet has made apps more popular and convenient, greatly reducing the need for users to enter domain names, and fundamentally reducing the use value of domain names. This will certainly be the biggest potential threat to domain name investment. And this is also the core point of view in the bad domain name market tone.
In the past year or two, although various domain name acquisition cases have been frequently reported, they are all old domain name transactions. At the same time, the new generation of domain names such as .top, .cc, .wang and other domain names have not been merged. Did not get very good results in the domain name field. This shows that the market is still dominated by the old suffix domain name, which has become a bit rigid. Coupled with the rapid development of the mobile Internet era, although the domain name useless theory is a very obvious extreme argument, it has been more and more recognized.
In short, the status and problems of the entire domain name field now directly reflect the urgent need for new growth points in the industry to break the situation.
Can the boom in artificial intelligence make .ai domain names a new starting point for the industry?
In fact, the growth of traditional gTLDs is slow, and the domestic domain name industry that has emerged with the help of new top-level domains is becoming a new global growth pole. For many non-mainstream domain names, it may be a challenge to the status of .com and .net A big opportunity.
According to the China Domain Name Industry Development Report, from 2008 to 2015, the global registration volume of .com and .net still ranked first and second in the traditional gTLD domains, and it is difficult to shake the leading position in a short time. However, with the influx of new top-level domain names into the market, the profits of selling domain names have gradually been compressed, and the entire market has become more fiercely competitive, moving from a monopolistic market to a relatively fully competitive market. It can be seen from the above figure that the growth rates of the registration of these two traditional gTLDs gradually slowed down from 2008 to 2015, from 22% in the heyday to the current average growth rate of 8%. The reason for the substantial growth is more affected by the enthusiasm of China's domain name investment.
However, contrary to the status of traditional gTLDs, the market potential of new top-level domains is exploding, especially as China has become the world's second largest domain name market. According to the data on the percentage of domain name registrations and the top ten new gTLDs, .xyz holds the top spot with absolute advantages. With its huge imagination space and characteristics consistent with language habits, it quickly develops into the threat of the leading .com One of them even caused a protracted commercial dispute, and the court was closed.
China's leading .top and .wang ranked second and third with 8.7% and 5.5%, respectively, and once ignited the domestic domain name investment industry. In other words, although the .com domain name still maintains the dominance, the new top-level domain names led by .xyz and .top have stimulated the crisis awareness of .com. Coupled with the disparity in strength, these new top-level domains may still be a bit unrealistic to really threaten .com.
The new top-level domain name, in addition to its own connotation and characteristics, has contributed to its popularity in the market, and it has been accompanied by the Internet's periodic capital hotspots. For example, the first year of VR predicted last year drove a lot of related domain name transactions. Among them, the domain name of vr.cn changed hands twice in just two months, and its value rose from one million to ten million. According to the investment situation and the focus of public opinion in 2017, it can be seen that artificial intelligence may become the next Internet outlet, and the .ai domain name suffix associated with it will give people a lot of room for thinking.
For example, Drive.ai, which received much attention because of the resignation of Wu Enda a few days ago, uses it. ai domain name. It is understood that Drive.ai is an artificial intelligence startup. Founded by eight artificial intelligence researchers at Stanford University. The company's main focus is on turning ordinary cars into driverless cars with toolkits. In addition, more and more artificial intelligence startups are starting to use ai domain names.
So, under the powerful potential energy generated by the outbreak of artificial intelligence, can .ai bring new growth points to the domain name investment market during the adjustment period?
Of course, this depends to a large extent on whether there will be a major technological breakthrough in the field of artificial intelligence this year, or whether phenomenal products will be born in the consumer market. But from the financing situation of start-ups, it can still be seen The real value of a domain name.
According to relevant data from venture capital data company CB Insights, the number of companies that successfully obtained their first financing among startups with the ".ai" extension has increased significantly in the past six quarters. And the startups that include ".ai" in the URL, the number of successful financings has grown rapidly from 2015 to 2016. The number in the fourth quarter of 2015 alone has reached the total number before 2014, so many observers have pointed out that startups may be able to reduce the difficulty of financing by adding a ".ai" suffix to the URL.
Compared to start-ups, it is clear that Internet giants are more suitable for research and development of artificial intelligence. For example, Tencent relied on a large number of investments and acquisition of domestic and foreign artificial intelligence companies to enhance its research and development capabilities. Baidu obviously laid out earlier and gradually shifted the company's strategic positioning to artificial intelligence-based technology-driven enterprises. Of course, they each held their own .Ai domain name.
After inquiry, the .ai domain name of most of the well-known Internet companies in China has been registered. A few of them are not in the hands of these Internet giants. For example, a question and answer application website that gathers group wisdom—Zhuhu, this is obviously also an Internet company suitable for developing in the direction of combining with artificial intelligence. However, the zhihu.ai domain name has always been displayed in the image of Kochi and high energy. The holder of the zhihu.ai domain name is an AI + knowledge abroad platform known as Zhiwai, and has also jumped to its platform homepage. This incident happened to me, it was still a bit surprising.
In general, the current status quo is that artificial intelligence is too hot. Now whether it is entrepreneurship or financing, if you want to get funding and attention, the words artificial intelligence, AI, chatbot or bot are no doubt used. Is the smartest option, and it may even increase valuations or speed up the financing process. With the dots and dots, under the leadership of the head industry + head company door, the .ai domain name is likely to usher in an outbreak of artificial intelligence.
So, will .ai become the next .com?
Looking at the domain name suffixes that have been sought after in recent years, there are no other features that are consistent with language habits, easy to remember, or distinctive in meaning. Although .ai was originally a national domain name of Anguilla, it is because of its "love" pinyin At the same time, it is simple and easy to remember, so it is very suitable for building a website. More importantly, artificial intelligence is definitely the mainstream direction of future technology development. Benefiting from this, related domain names are likely to rise, but will it have the opportunity to reproduce the myth of com and become the new domain hegemony?
In fact, the opportunities facing .ai domain names are similar to the situation when the original .com swept the Internet.
In the two or three years after the birth of the domain name in 1985, there were only 100 registered URLs. However, with the take-off of consumer PCs and the opening of the civil network, the registration of .com domain names grew rapidly from 223 to 9,005 in the next five years. So the rise of .com is in line with the tide of the Internet age. And .ai is also likely to conform to artificial intelligence, a productivity tool that is also transformative, and achieve a new round of growth.
From the sedo transaction list in the third week of January 2017, it can be seen that the .ai domain name suffix has occupied half of the list in national domain names, and the transaction price is generally higher than other regions, even excluding more than 10,000 US dollars The price difference between .ai and .com domain names is relatively small. This is enough to show that the value of .ai-related domain names is gradually being recognized.
However, in the long run, the impact of artificial intelligence on its related domain names is not entirely favorable, and many people even doubt whether the website will still exist under the impact of artificial intelligence. Here we need to know that any current consideration of artificial intelligence is actually speculation, it is difficult to find a scientific basis to refute an disagreement, and it is also impossible to prove that a certain trend is inevitable. Perhaps in the future, the website will become one of the forms of artificial intelligence, and it exists as an entrance to connect with intelligent services. This explanation is also reasonable.
And artificial intelligence will undoubtedly bring new focus to domain name investment. It may change with time and circumstances. Although it may face an unpredictable crisis in the future, artificial intelligence will have a certain period of time or even a long time. In particular, .ai will be a major benefit, and the URL will still be an important part of the Internet and even the Internet of Things. As a .ai domain name that is driven by the shareholder wind of artificial intelligence, can it skyrocket and become the next .com domain name, aside from its many advantages, the rest only needs luck. And from the current point of view, even if the website and domain name have been impacted by the mobile Internet, they are still the mainstream of the times. By the end of 2015, the total number of websites in China reached 4.267 million, a year-on-year increase of 16.99%. At the same time, the total number of independent domain names used was 561.7 thousand, which also achieved a large increase. Although the rate of domain name applications is relatively low compared to foreign countries, websites are still the main entrance for most applications and services. In addition, apps are not as popular as they were then, and websites and domain names will not be depressed for a long time.