Quality of Experience

The 18th ITC Specialist Seminar on Quality of Experience has been held on May 29-30, 2008 in Karlskrona, Sweden.

The notion and topic of Quality of Experience (QoE) keeps attracting the attention of manufacturers, operators and researchers. It links user perception and expectations on one side and technical Quality of Service (QoS) parameters, management, pricing schemes etc. on the other side. Such links are needed in order to balance user satisfaction and economic aspects of service provisioning. However, the notion of QoE as such is not without controversy. Technicians, used to a world of objective and clearly definable parameters, tend to fear the subjective, somehow fuzzy parts associated with end user perception. Vice versa, customer relationship and marketing departments might find themselves uncomfortable with technical parameters which might not reflect the user perception in some tense situations. Nevertheless, appearance and utility of a networked service depend on the underlying technical solutions and their performance.
Originally, the program was scheduled for two days with slots of 30 minutes for presentation and discussion. However, for time limitations on Friday, the slot duration was limited to 25 minutes. Mostly the Seminar was running on schedule, but 30-minute slots might have been better, as there were many questions and discussion items after each talk.

The program of the seminar hereafter reflected the main objectives:

Thursday 29th May

Keynote 1
Securing predictable user experience, Matz Norling (Ericsson, Sweden).
This keynote provided a very interesting and practical insight into an industrial approach to QoE management. It included a practical demonstration of management tools.

Session 1. Image and Video Quality

Automated Qualitative Assessment of Multi-Modal Distortions in Digital Images Based on GLZ. Andrzej Glowacz (AGH University of Science and Technology, PL); Michal Grega (AGH University of Science and Technology, PL); Lucjan Janowski (AGH University of Science and Technology, PL); Mikolaj Leszczuk (AGH University of Science and Technology, PL); Piotr Romaniak (AGH University of Science and Technology, PL); Simon Pietro Romano (University of Napoli Federico II, IT).

End-2-End Evaluation of IP Multimedia Services, a User Perceived Quality of Service Approach. Pedro Casas (Telecom Bretagne, FR); Pablo Belzarena (Universidad de la Republica, Uruguay, UY); Sandrine Vaton (ENST Bretagne, FR).

Evaluation of Objective Video Quality Metrics: Preparing High-Quality Subjective Datasets. Leigh Thorpe (Nortel, CA); Filippo Speranza (Communications Research Centre, CA); Tim Rahrer (Nortel, CA).

Session 2. Charging, Control and Fairness

From QoS to QoX: A Charging Perspective. Peter Reichl (Telecommunications Research Center Vienna (ftw.), AT); Joachim Fabini (Vienna University of Technology, AT); Marco Happenhofer (Vienna University of Technology, AT); Christoph Egger (Vienna University of Technology, AT).

Dynamic Bandwidth Control in Wireless Mesh Networks: A Quality of Experience based Approach. Rastin Pries (University of Wuerzburg, DE); David Hock (University of Wuerzburg, DE); Nico Bayer (T-Systems, DE); Matthias Siebert (T-Systems, DE); Dirk Staehle (University of Wuerzburg, DE); Veselin Rakocevic (City University, UK); Bangnan Xu (T-Systems, Technologiezentrum, DE); Phuoc Tran-Gia (University of Wuerzburg, DE).

Revisiting FAST TCP Fairness. Tuan Trinh (Budapest University of Technology and Economics, HU); Balázs Sonkoly (Budapest University of Technology and Economics, HU); Sándor Molnár (Budapest University of Technology and Economics, HU).

Session 3: Frameworks and Cross-Layer Approaches

QoE-based Cross-layer Optimization for Wireless Multiuser Systems. Shoaib Khan (Munich University of Technology, DE); Srisakul Thakolsri (DoCoMo Euro-Labs, DE); Eckehard Steinbach (Munich University of Technology, DE); Wolfgang Kellerer (DoCoMo EuroLaboratories, DE).

Quality of Experience Based Cross-Layer Design of Mobile Video Systems. Hans-Juergen Zepernick (Blekinge Institute of Technology, SE); Markus Fiedler (Blekinge Institute of Technology, SE); Lars Lundberg (Blekinge Institute of Technology, SE); Mats Pettersson (Blekinge Institute of Technology, SE); Patrik Arlos (Blekinge Institute of Techology, SE).

Framework for the Integrated Video Quality Assessment. Piotr Romaniak (AGH University of Science and Technology, PL); Mu Mu (Lancaster University, UK); Andreas Mauthe (Lancaster University, UK); Salvatore D'Antonio (Consorzio Interuniversitario Nazionale per l'Informatica, IT); Mikolaj Leszczuk (AGH University of Science and Technology, PL).

QoE Driven Framework for High Performance Multimedia Delivery over WiMax. RaviShankar Ravindran (Nortel, CA); Francois Blouin (Nortel, CA).

Friday 30th May

Keynote 2
Automatic measuring of QoE with the PSQA approach, Gerardo Rubino (IRISA, France).
This keynote described the background behind the "Pseudo-Subjective Quality Assessment" (PSQA) approach and illustrated its use in several examples.

Session 4. Quality Indicators

Testing the IQX Hypothesis for Exponential Interdependency between QoS and QoE of Voice Codecs iLBC and G.711. Tobias Hoßfeld (University of Wuerzburg, DE); David Hock (University of Wuerzburg, DE); Phuoc Tran-Gia (University of Wuerzburg, DE); Kurt Tutschku (Wuerzburg University, DE); Markus Fiedler (Blekinge Institute of Technology, SE).

Real-Time Anomaly Monitoring for QoE Indicators. Frederic Guyard (Orange Labs, FR); Sergio Beker (Orange Labs, FR).

Problems arising in evaluating perceived quality of media applications in packet networks. Dmitri Moltchanov (Tampere University of Technology, FI).

Session 5. Performance Modeling

Quasi-Stationary Models for Performance Analysis of Real-Time Traffic. Thomas Bonald (Orange Labs, FR); Philippe Olivier (Orange Labs, FR).

Simple Approximations of Delay-Variation Distributions. Ron Armolavicius (Nortel Networks, CA).

Distribution of Loss Periods for Aggregated Multimedia Traffic. Astrid Undheim (Norwegian University of Science and Technology, NO); Peder Emstad (Norwegian University of Science and Technology, NO).

Session 6. IMS

On understanding availability of services based on IP Multimedia Subsystem. Arlene Pearce (University of Oslo, NO); Judith Rossebř (Telenor, NO); Terje Jensen (Telenor, NO).

The Effects of Load Distribution Algorithms in Application's Response Time in the IMS Architecture. Plarent Tirana (University of Missouri-Kansas City, US); Deep Medhi (University of Missouri-Kansas City, US).

Summary and Dissemination

The oral feedback of the delegates (or Quality of Experience, as they put it themselves) was very positive. The very positive and constructive atmosphere helped to build a community regarding QoE issues.

Final versions of the accepted papers were collected by mid-May. The delegates were given a memory stick with an electronic (pdf) version of the proceedings. Each author had the possibility to re-submit a corrected version of the paper until beginning of August 2008. The proceedings appeared in the Research Reports series of BTH.
Furthermore, a Call for Papers of a Special Issue of Annals of Telecommunications was prepared in conjunction with Prosper Chemouil. This CfP targeted amongst others strong contributions from ITC-SS 18. Guest Editors are Patrik Arlos and Markus Fiedler from the ITC-SS 18 team, and Helmut Hlavacs and Klaus Hackbarth who participated in the preparation of the EuroFGI IA.7.6 Workshop on Socio-Economic Issues of Future Generation Internet, which took place in Karlskrona ahead of ITC-SS 18 on May 27-28. The purpose of this collocation was a mutual strengthening of the events with their complementary topics, which is also highlighted in the above-mentioned CfP.

TPC Co-Chairs

  • Markus Fiedler, ITC-SS 18 Chair, Blekinge Institute of Technology, SE
  • François Blouin, TPC Co-Chair, Nortel, CA
  • Patrik Arlos, TPC Co-Chair, Blekinge Institute of Technology, SE