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1 Year on from Sunrise for .ASIA

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Nearly a year has passed since Early Bird Sunrise registration began for the coveted new .asia domain extension, the Early Bird Sunrise period (SR2a) was the first opportunity for commercial entities to register a .asia extension. Prior to this, registration was limited to Asian governments wishing to submit their public bodies and culturally or economically important domains during the pre-Sunrise period.Throughout the commercial Sunrise period, entry was limited to those companies with registered trademarks trading in on of the 72 Asian countries as defined by ICANN, the period was split into four sub-periods which ran consecutively with the entry requirements becoming less stringent over time, and finally closed for new registration on January 31 2008.On March 26 2008 the .asia Go Live registration period started allowing anyone around the world to buy a .asia domain, and prompted a wave of speculators to begin buying up cyber real-estate from web hosts in the hope that a few companies with sloppy marketing departments had missed the Sunrise window.So why is the .asia extension so important, when the region has functioned perfectly well over the years with .com and the other Asian regional extensions?Put simply .asia provides a unifying sense of economic identity for the region which has over 500 million internet users (compared with 315 million in Europe and 253 million in the USA) a number which is growing steadily all the time as the cost of technology decreases. .asia also allows companies to demonstrate an online presence and expand in to a region with one of the fastest moving economies in the world. That said how many companies have taken advantage of their newly acquired domains and actually set up a live site, well fewer that you would expect, a search of the obvious key players (Coca Cola, Pepsi, Ford) returned “error page not found messages” Toyota the third largest Asian company according to Business Week ‘Top 25 Asian Companies’ have not set up a .asia page,
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