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This paper presents a multimedia streaming service in a mobile (3G) environment that, in addition to in-band congestion signals such as packet losses and delay variations, receives congestion cues from a Network Coverage Map Service (NCMS) to make rate-control decisions. The streaming client routinely queries the NCMS to assess the network conditions at future locations along its expected path. The streaming client may ask the streaming server for short-term transmission bursts to increase pre-buffering when it is approaching areas with bad network performance to maintain media quality. If needed, the client may also switch to a different encoding rate (rate-switching) depending on the severity of expected congestion. These notifications are scheduled as late as possible, so that any changes in network conditions and/or changes in user's movements can be taken into account (late scheduling). Using this type of geo-predictive media streaming service we show that the streaming client can provide pause-less playback and better quality of experience to the user.
Date of Conference: 25-28 June 2012