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Implications of the ISO base media file format on adaptive HTTP streaming of H.264/SVC

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3 Author(s)
Ingo Kofler ; Institute of Information Technology (ITEC), Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt, Austria ; Robert Kuschnig ; Hermann Hellwagner

HTTP streaming has gained significant attraction in the last few years. Currently many commercial as well as standardized streaming systems are already offering adaptive streaming. In most cases, the adaptation is achieved by switching between separately encoded video streams in different qualities. In contrast to that, this paper focuses on the applicability of scalable video coding based on the H.264/SVC standard for adaptive HTTP streaming. Recent work has already highlighted the conceptual advantages like better cache utilization, fine-grained bit rate scalability, and lower storage requirements. This paper discusses the actual realization and design options for implementing priority streaming using the ISO Base Media File Format (BMFF). We propose three different strategies for organizing the scalable video bit stream that consider both the possibilities as well as limitations of the ISO BMFF. The proposed strategies are discussed and evaluated both conceptually and quantitatively. For that purpose, we provide a detailed analysis based on modeling both the overhead of the file format and the HTTP encapsulation. The results for all three priority streaming strategies show that the limitations of the ISO BMFF result in a high relative overhead in the case of low bit rate content. However, when applied to high quality content, priority streaming of H.264/SVC can be implemented at a very low cost. Depending on the number of layers and the offered scalability dimensions, different strategies should be chosen to minimize the overhead. Based on the analytical model and the discussion, this paper provides guidance for selecting the most efficient strategy.

Published in:

2012 IEEE Consumer Communications and Networking Conference (CCNC)

Date of Conference:

14-17 Jan. 2012