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Transmission of compressed video over error-prone channels requires techniques that are efficient in compressing the video and are robust against the channel errors. The application of MPEG-4 can conform to the bandwidth limitation, but the highly compressed bits will be more susceptible to noise errors. In this paper, we present a mode-based error detection (MED) technique and a mode-based unequal error protection (M-UEP) technique to provide the robust video transmission of MPEG-4 compressed bits over error-prone channels. The MED technique can detect errors effectively and efficiently, which cannot be detected traditionally. Experimental results show that the error-detection ratio is more than 90%, and sometimes even 100%. Concerning the M-UEP, experimental results prove that it can provide better decoded video quality than the traditional unequal error protection technique does. In conclusion, the two proposed techniques are highly effective and efficient for the robust transport of MPEG-4 video over error-prone channels.