Google is officially launching its .dev top-level domain (TLD) into general availability from today.
The internet giant opened up early-access registrations to .dev domains just last week, though prices originally were astronomical — the inaugural phase was more about letting companies snap up their desired developer-focused domains. Plus, they could only be registered through Google’s registry system.
On February 19, the first day of launch, users could expect to pay more than $10,000 to register a .dev domain, a figure that dropped to around $3,000 the following day and then $200 the day after. Now anyone can buy their preferred .dev domain for as little as $12, while the official launch means that you are no longer restricted to Google’s own service — you can apply through all the usual registrars, such as GoDaddy.
As an aside here, Google said that it has “big plans” for the .dev domain, part of which involves giving out a .dev domain to everyone who applies to its annual developer-focused I/O conference, which is being held in May this year.
“We’ll be moving more of our existing projects and launching some exciting things on .dev in the months to come,” noted Adam Seligman, Google’s VP of developer relations, in a blog post.
Many moons ago, developers used .dev domains internally to test their code, but then ICANN opened the floodgates to a whole new host of TLDs. Google successfully bid for the .dev domain in 2015, which led to numerous developers being locked out of their internal testing environments.