Germany’s .de cruised past the 17 millionth domain milestone on 13 July 2021 with the registry, DENIC, naming the milestone domain as melba-stoffkreation.de. The passing of the milestone reinforces the German ccTLD’s position as Europe’s largest.
.DE is the fourth largest top-level domain, third largest country code top-level domain (ccTLD) and largest TLD within Europe, behind .com (154.6 million), Tokelau’s free .tk (24.7m) and China’s .cn (20.7m), according to figures in Verisign’s latest Domain Name Industry Brief as of 31 March 2021. Following were .net (13.4m) and the United Kingdom’s .uk (11.0m). Today, according to DENIC statistics, there are 17,005,036 .de domains currently registered indicating the onward growth continues.
The registrant noted as the 17 millionth specialises in creating individual gifts and intends to set up a little online shop and a blog next to the website under the domain.
“For my new online presence I have chosen the motto ‘Favourite things for every day’. I think there’s nothing better than gifts that are used in everyday life – it’s a little reminder of the giver every time you pick them up. And I also add a personal message from you if you wish,” says Melanie Baumgardt. “Handicrafts, especially embroidery and sewing, have always fascinated me. In 2014, I turned my hobby into a profession, and with my new website I can now present myself even more professionally online – true to my own ideas.” Until the new web presence is established, you can get a glimpse of her creations on Instagram.
In their announcement DENIC notes Ms Baumgardt is not alone in opting for a .de domain. Every month, an average of more than 30,000 domains are registered with DENIC with Germany’s ccTLD being the preferred choice of private individuals, self-employed persons, medium-sized companies or international groups that are active in Germany.
.DE commenced back in 1986 when the technical foundations for .de were laid. Since then the growth has been phenomenal and for many years, .de was the world’s largest ccTLD. Two years after delegation, there were no more than six .de entries, which had been entered manually. But this list started growing at an increasing pace, and about a decade later, the time was ripe to create a sustainable basis for domain registration and administration. At the end of 1996, 37 German Internet service providers founded the DENIC Cooperative. By this time, about 50,000 domain names had been registered. Three years later, this number had risen to one million, with many more following soon.
Interest in .de domains continues to be immense: To have one’s own Internet presence is quite attractive to Germans. Today, in terms of figures, nearly every fifth citizen has a .de domain. And the popularity of .de domains does not stop at German borders: Almost 1.5 million of them are registered in the name of holders residing outside Germany.
In June 2021 I interviewed DENIC’s CEO Jörg Schweiger who in January announced he was stepping down at the end of the year. In the Interview Schweiger spoke of his time at DENIC, security, new gTLDs, ICANN, GDPR and the future of domain names. To read the interview click here.