There are also a number of large-scale speculators betting that gTLDs may be the Internet’s next big gold mine. One such speculator, a company called Donuts, applied for 307 separate domains – at a cost of nearly $57 million.
“Donuts registered very benign, generic names. They’re betting everything on black and they’re hoping this goes,” says Stockton. “If they’re right, they could own half the internet, they could be the next Google. If they’re wrong, they’ll be the next Pets.com.”
Behind the speculators (and Amazon and Google) other companies also took a shot at multiple gTLDs. L’Oreal applied for 15 separate domains, including .Hair, .Makeup, and .Beauty. VeriSign applied for 14 gTLDs, Microsoft applied for 11 and Apple applied for just one (.Apple, of course). Many other big company names dot the list of applications. Google is conspicuously absent. Update: The original post noted that Google had not applied for any domain names. In fact, Google applied for quite a few — 101 — using a company called Charleston Road Registry, which will manage Google’s top-level domains.