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ICANN approves the RSP Handbook

03rd July, 2024

Last week, the ICANN Board voted to adopt the Registry Services Provider (RSP) Handbook ahead the next round of new gTLDs due to open in Q2 of 2026. The Handbook provides an overview of the process and establishes the criteria for an entity to become a Registry Services Provider (RSP) and be able to offer services to new gTLD Registries for the second round.

Every potential RSP will need to be evaluated by ICANN with the first Pre-Evaluation period planned to open on 19 November 2024, and close on 20 May 2025. RSPs that pass the evaluation process during this period will be announced around December 2025. Prospective new gTLD applicants may elect to use one of these pre-evaluated RSPs for their application if they so wish, although there is no obligation to do so.

Continued RSP evaluation will happen as part of the application submission period for the new gTLDs from Q2 2026.  Successful RSPs from this window may be selected by registry operators upon successful evaluation and will also be added to the public list of evaluated RSPs.

The fee for RSP Evaluation will be US$92,000 – whether evaluated in the first or second evaluation period. Although, additional costs may be incurred if an extended technical review is required.

You can read the RSP Handbook, which includes the questions for the evaluation, here.