Mind Your Own Bandwidth: An Edge Solution to Peak-hour Broadband Congestion

Felix Ming Fai Wong, Carlee Joe-Wong, Sangtae Ha, Zhenming Liu, Mung Chiang

Motivated by recent increases in network traffic, we propose a decentralized network edge-based solution to peak-hour broadband congestion that incentivizes users to moderate their bandwidth demands to their actual needs. Our solution is centered on smart home gateways that allocate bandwidth in a two-level hierarchy: first, a gateway purchases guaranteed bandwidth from the Internet Service Provider (ISP) with virtual credits. It then self-limits its bandwidth usage and distributes the bandwidth among its apps and devices according to their relative priorities. To this end, we design a credit allocation and redistribution mechanism for the first level, and implement our gateways on commodity wireless routers for the second level. We demonstrate our system's effectiveness and practicality with theoretical analysis, simulations and experiments on real traffic. Compared to a baseline equal sharing algorithm, our solution significantly improves users' overall satisfaction and yields a fair allocation of bandwidth across users.

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