An End-to-End Approach for Transparent Mobility across Heterogeneous Wireless Networks

Hung-Yun Hsieh, Kyu-Han Kim, and Raghupathy Sivakumar
GNAN Research Group
School of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Georgia Institute of Technology

ACM/Kluwer Mobile Networks and Applications Journal (MONET), Special Issue on Integration of Heterogeneous Wireless Technologies, vol. 9, no 4, pp. 363-378, August 2004.


With the advent of a myriad of wireless networking technologies, a mobile host today can potentially be equipped with multiple wireless interfaces that have access to different wireless networks. It is widely perceived that future generation wireless networks will exhibit a similar trend in supporting a large variety of heterogeneous wireless access technologies that a mobile host can choose from. In this paper, we consider such a multi-homed mobile host and propose an end-to-end solution that enables the seamless use of heterogeneous wireless access technologies. The unique features of the proposed solution include: (i) a purely end-to-end approach to handle host mobility that requires no support from the underlying network infrastructure, (ii) seamless vertical handoffs when the mobile host migrates from one access network to another, (iii) ability to support different congestion control schemes for a live connection traversing different interfaces, and (iv) effective bandwidth aggregation when the mobile host has simultaneous access to multiple networks. We present the design and details of the proposed approach, and evaluate its performance through simulations and real-life field experiments.