The virtue of patience in low-complexity scheduling of packetized media with feedback

Christophe De Vleeschouwer, Jacob Chakareski, Pascal Frossard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


We consider streaming pre-encoded and packetized media over best-effort networks in the presence of acknowledgment feedbacks. We first review a rate-distortion (RD) optimization framework that can be employed in such scenarios. As part of the framework, a scheduling algorithm selects the data to send over the network at any given time, so as to minimize the end-to-end distortion, given an estimate of channel resources and a history of previous transmissions and received acknowledgements. In practice, a greedy scheduling strategy is often considered to limit the solution search space, and reduce the computational complexity associated to the RD optimization framework. Our work observes that popular greedy schedulers are strongly penalized by early retransmissions. Therefore, we propose a scheduling algorithm that avoids premature retransmissions, while preserving the low computational complexity aspect of the greedy paradigm. Such a scheduling strategy maintains close to optimal RD performance when adapting to network bandwidth fluctuations. Our experimental results demonstrate that the proposed patient greedy scheduler provides a reduction of up to 50% in transmission rate relative to conventional greedy approaches, and that it brings up to 2 dB of quality improvement in scheduling classical MPEG-based packet video streams.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)348-364
Number of pages17
JournalIEEE Transactions on Multimedia
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2007
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Signal Processing
  • Media Technology
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


  • Audio coding
  • Channel coding
  • Error control
  • Greedy packet scheduling
  • Internet
  • Markov processes
  • Multimedia communicationoptimal control
  • Protocols
  • Rate-distortion optimization
  • Video coding
  • Video streaming


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