User Tolerance and Self-Regulation in Congestion Control

Hengky Susanto, Byung Guk Kim, Benyuan Liu

In response to poor quality of service (QoS), users self-regulate, i.e. they immediately release bandwidth and abandon network. However, there are studies that show users are willing to tolerate poor QoS for some time to evaluate if network performance will improve before abandoning the network. In this paper, we investigate how users willingness to wait for improved QoS may influence network activities, such as network pricing, bandwidth allocation, network revenue, and performance. We develop and employ a self-regulation model that includes user evaluation of QoS before deciding to abandon or stay in the network. This model considers these two factors: user tolerance of low QoS and the price per unit a user is willing to pay. Our investigation uncovers a double edged problem network may be populated with lower paying users, who are also dissatisfied. These lower paying users drive the price higher than the price produced by conventional solution for network congestion. This leads to our proposal for a market informed congestion control scheme, where network resolves congestion based on user profile that is defined by their ability to pay and demand for bandwidth.

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