The sunrise period for .tel domain names began on 3 December 2008 and runs until 2 February 2009. Only trade mark owners can apply for priority registration during this period but applications will open up on a staged basis from 3 February 2009. The advantage of .tel registration is that it will act as a sort of web based directory for individuals or companies by bringing together contact information and links in one place so that this information can be accessed simply by users inputting a name plus .tel into a web browser.
User contact information will be held on the server where the .tel domain name is hosted, so there will be no need to maintain a website and a .tel domain name will be accessible to any applicant. For this reason there may well be a high incidence of cyber squatting and it would be prudent for businesses concerned about this risk to seek registration as early as possible.