USENIX 2002 Annual Conference - Technical Program Abstract
Application-specific network management for energy-aware streaming of popular multimedia format
University of Georgia; Amin Vahdat, Duke University
The typical duration of multimedia streams makes wireless network
interface (WNIC) energy consumption a particularly acute problem
for mobile clients. In this work, we explore ways to transmit data
packets in a predictable fashion; allowing the clients to
transition the WNIC to a lower power consuming sleep
state. First, we show the limitations of IEEE 802.11 power saving
mode for isochronous multimedia streams. Without an understanding
of the stream requirements, they do not offer any energy savings
for multimedia streams over 56 kbps. The potential energy savings
is also affected by multiple clients sharing the same access
point. On the other hand, an application-specific server side
traffic shaping mechanism can offer good energy saving for all the
stream formats without any data loss. We show that the mechanism
can save up to 83% of the energy required for receiving data. The
technique offers similar savings for multiple clients sharing the
same wireless access point. For high fidelity streams, media
players react to these added delays by lowering the stream
fidelity. We propose that future media players should offer
configurable settings for recognizing such energy-aware packet
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