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An Extensible Network Resource Abstraction for Applications on Mobile Devices

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3 Author(s)
Peddemors, A. ; INCA group, Telematica Inst., Enschede, Netherlands ; Niemegeers, I. ; Eertink, H.

Mobile devices are increasingly equipped with multiple network interfaces that can dynamically support access to different kinds of wireless and fixed networks. Dealing with these dynamics and heterogeneity is challenging for many types of applications running on mobile devices and is hindered by the lack of a consistent overview of available network resources. In this paper we present a system service which offers an extensible network resource abstraction to applications running on a mobile device. It can be used in conjunction with well-known APIs that provide access to these resources. We argue that the cross-layer and mobility reflecting transparency introduced by the model underpinning this abstraction is essential for applications that need to dynamically adapt to changes in available network resources. Ease of adaptation may reduce the reliance on dedicated mobility management protocols. Furthermore, we show that different types of mobile applications may use this abstraction at various levels of detail, to match their specific decision making needs. We introduce the architecture of the service, discuss experiences with its reference implementation, and show how the system can be extended to accommodate new network technologies. Experiments with a real-world application indicate that uncomplicated application logic suffices for a dynamic network environment.

Published in:

Communication Systems Software and Middleware, 2007. COMSWARE 2007. 2nd International Conference on

Date of Conference:

7-12 Jan. 2007