Last year alone, IPinfo serviced 462 billion API requests for over 100,000 users. With this many loyal users, it’s not surprising that we also answer numerous questions related to each specific use case.

As a result, our in-house data experts track insights such as these to help our customers develop better use cases. Here are our most recent findings.

General findings for IP changes

According to our data records, we’ve established that in general, IP address database changes with this estimated frequency:

  • Daily: 1-2% change
  • Weekly: 7-10% change
  • Monthly: ~20% change

For downloadable database users, these changes influence how frequently companies need to download and refresh IP insights. That’s why IPinfo’s database is updated every 24 hours, giving users access to industry-leading IP data whether using our API or downloads. If IPs are changing location every day, even on a small level, then we want to reflect that in our database.

Keep reading for more specifics about IP data changes over certain time periods or other parameters.

How many IP ranges change country and city in a day?

Pulling from some 2020 reports, IP ranges tend to change country and city with this level of frequency.

date ranges changed city ranges changed country
2020-03-17 15633 876
2020-03-16 16746 1045
2020-03-15 16404 668
2020-03-14 15574 732
2020-03-13 1524828 16051

Given that the total number of ranges is about 46,433,716, these changes are negligible.

On March 13, 2020, IPinfo detected a spike in the number of ranges that changed city location (3.3%). This directly correlates with an update provided by one of our IP address sources, which happened on March 11, 2020.

How many IPs change geolocation in a day?

In a day approximately 0.04% of blocks and 0.32% IPs change their city in any given day. The graph below represents the frequency of changes we’ve detected.

blocks changed affected IPs total blocks total IPs blocks changed (%) affected IPs (%)
16641 13605749 46065824 4294967296 0.03612439451 0.3167835297

While these changes are almost negligible, the fact that IPs change location every 24 hours is why IPinfo updates these insights with the same level of frequency.

How many IPs change geolocation in a week?

Around 3.3% of IP blocks and 11% of IPs change their city in a week.

blocks changed affected IPs total blocks total IPs blocks changed (%) affected IPs (%)
1536637 472372846 46065824 4294967296 3.3357419157 10.998287377

How many IPs change geolocation in a month?

Our data experts ran similar queries for monthly changes. Here’s what they found.

blocks changed affected IPs total blocks total IPs blocks changed (%) affected IPs (%)
2159569 737783347 46065824 4294967296 4.688996883 17.177857155

Approximately 4.7% of blocks and 17% of IPs change their city in a month. It’s also worth mentioning that the above numbers are with respect to a sample of /24 and smaller WHOIS ranges.

How many IPs change geolocation in a year?

Between September 2020 and September 2021, IPinfo tracked these approximate changes in IP addresses.

total IPs affected IPs (%)
3702258688 51.574946888206206

While some of these changes could be due to algorithm changes, the end result is that approximately 42.6% of IPs change location on the city level during the year. For country-level changes, we’ve tracked only 6.07% differences over the course of a year.

Beyond the numbers: Why IP data changes over time

IP address data is constantly evolving. That’s why IP data providers, like IPinfo, need systems to keep their databases clean and accurate. But beyond the numbers, here are some real-life examples of why IPs change over time.

ISP improvements and growth

ISPs update their databases for accuracy, and this can cause IP addresses to change. Take, for instance, this geolocation change we recently noticed.

The geolocation update is most likely due to improvements and updates in ISPs databases. In this case, the pool of IP addresses has changed the location in Puerto Rico to a more accurate location in Spain as reflected in the graphic below.

Mobile roaming

Some countries, like Belgium, share many borders with other countries. This also affects IP geolocation changes throughout the year as represented below.

As a result of mobile roaming, some IPs changed ASNs and eventually landed on the ASN assigned to edpnet - a telecommunications provider offering internet, fiber and telephone services in Belgium and the Netherlands.

Multinational or expanding companies

When telecommunication providers expand to other countries or regions, these changes can also affect the geolocation of IPs. Take Swisscom, for example. Nearly a quarter of Swisscom was sold to Vodaphone in 2001.

More recently, however, Swisscom purchased the majority of Fastweb - the second largest telecom company in Italy. This caused the country code to change for Swisscom along with the geolocation of some IPs.

In short, IP address data can change for a variety of reasons. That’s why IPinfo’s data team updates our database on a daily basis - to stay up to date with IP changes and keep our data clean and accurate.

How to use this information

Some of our customers use this information to decide how frequently they need to download our database. If a use case, for instance, requires the highest level of accuracy, these users may want to download our insights every day.

However, if small deviations on the city level don’t affect your use case, you could download our insights with weekly or monthly frequency. In general, we don’t recommend downloading the datasets only once a year because, as we’ve seen, over 40 percent of IPs change city location every year.

As always, our data experts are available to help you determine the best approach for your specific use case. They have access to insights about IP addresses to help users make informed decisions about database downloads and API requests.

Additionally, our team helps build out custom datasets or enterprise solutions such as these:

  • Higher request volumes
  • Custom API response
  • More data types/fields
  • Multi-year discounts
  • Better support SLA
  • Full database access

Our data experts enjoy helping customers use their IP address data to its full capacity.

Have a question or unique use case? Connect with a data expert today for customized solutions!