Google today announced that you can now register .dev domain names. Google acquired the .dev top-level domain when ICANN opened up the web to new generic top-level domains (gTLD) a few years ago. At the time, Google acquired gTLD’s like .app, .page and .dev (for some reason, Google also owns .soy).
Right now, the .dev domains are still in an early access program, though. That means you’ll have to pay an additional fee that decreases every day until February 28 — and that early access fee is pretty steep.
Registering a new domain on GoDaddy, which is one of the many resellers that offer the new domain names, will set you back over $12,500 in extra fees today. Tomorrow, that price drops to just over $3,100. Come February 28, you can register any available domain and it’ll just cost you about $20 per year. The idea here, of course, is to manage demand (and to extract a few extra dollars from the companies that really need to have a given domain name).
Some of the companies and organizations that are already using the new gTLD are Google itself, as well as the likes of GitHub. Women Who Code, JetBrains, Codecademy and Salesforce. And because this is 2019, there’s also Kubernetes.dev.
Like its .app domains, .dev domains will require HTTPS connections to protect users from ad malware, tracking injections and Wi-Fi snooping.
“We hope .dev will be a new home for you to build your communities, learn the latest tech and showcase your projects—all with a perfect domain name,” Google explains in today’s announcement.
I never got the sense that there was all that much demand for non-.com or country-level domain names (does the world really need .ninja domains?), but if you always wanted a .dev domain, now would be a good time to get out your credit card.