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The scalable video coding extension of the H.264/MPEG-4 AVC standard allows encoding a video sequence once and streaming it over heterogeneous networks to a variety of end devices. Different scalability techniques can be employed in order to deliver the most appropriate video bitstream based on network and device characteristics. However, users' Quality of Experience should be maximized at all time. In this paper, we investigate the influence of using temporal scalability and signal-to-noise ratio (quality) scalability on the Quality of Experience. A subjective test was conducted following a new methodology based on quality assessment using full length movies. This enables users to evaluate the video content in more realistic environments. During the test, subjects were asked to rate a movie which contained several scalability degradations. Results indicate that users, in general, favour temporal scalability over quality scalability.
Date of Conference: 29-31 July 2009