New gTLD .host is now available through the Pioneer Program from registry Radix, which announced the domain’s release timeline on Thursday. Sunrise for .host begins June 24 and Landrush will follow on Aug. 26.
The Pioneer Program provides an opportunity for early domain claims and use, and Radix expects “category killers” line web.host, cloud.host, server.host, app.host and other premium domains to be snapped up during the early entry period.
The timeline sets general availability for Sept. 17, but demand and the industry-specific nature of .host make it likely we will see a wide number of active sites using the new gTLD long before then.
The early interest illustrates a passion for the .host extension in the web community,” Radix Business Head Sandeep Ramchandani said in a statement. “There’s a lot of excitement on our end, too. We’re looking forward to working with members of the hosting industry who will set inspiring examples and make a mark as pioneers of the community’s own namespace.”
The Pioneer Program launch is timed by Radix to coincide with the run up to HostingCon Miami on June 16.
Radix is still undecided whether the Landrush portion of the registration period will be on an auction or “first-come, first-served” basis, saying it depends on demand.
Other extensions being operated by Radix include .website, .press, and .space. The company says it is the largest Asian applicant to ICANN’s new gTLD program having invested $30 million, and is in consideration for .web, .music, .shop, and .blog.
Radix was launched by Directi using ARI Registry Services in 2012. Directi, along with Radix and the operator rights for the new extensions, were acquired by EIG in January 2014.
A study last year by Sedo indicated a lack of awareness of new gTLDs among SMBs could stifle demand, but this issue is obviously more likely to affect extensions like those released to general availability in January by Donuts, such as .clothing.