18 February 2014 Interactive real-time media streaming with reliable communication
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Abstract
Streaming media is a recent technique for delivering multimedia information from a source provider to an end- user over the Internet. The major advantage of this technique is that the media player can start playing a multimedia file even before the entire file is transmitted. Most streaming media applications are currently implemented based on the client-server architecture, where a server system hosts the media file and a client system connects to this server system to download the file. Although the client-server architecture is successful in many situations, it may not be ideal to rely on such a system to provide the streaming service as users may be required to register an account using personal information in order to use the service. This is troublesome if a user wishes to watch a movie simultaneously while interacting with a friend in another part of the world over the Internet. In this paper, we describe a new real-time media streaming application implemented on a peer-to-peer (P2P) architecture in order to overcome these challenges within a mobile environment. When using the peer-to-peer architecture, streaming media is shared directly between end-users, called peers, with minimal or no reliance on a dedicated server. Based on the proposed software pεvμa (pronounced [revma]), named for the Greek word meaning stream, we can host a media file on any computer and directly stream it to a connected partner. To accomplish this, pεvμa utilizes the Microsoft .NET Framework and Windows Presentation Framework, which are widely available on various types of windows-compatible personal computers and mobile devices. With specially designed multi-threaded algorithms, the application can stream HD video at speeds upwards of 20 Mbps using the User Datagram Protocol (UDP). Streaming and playback are handled using synchronized threads that communicate with one another once a connection is established. Alteration of playback, such as pausing playback or tracking to a different spot in the media file, will be reflected in all media streams. These techniques are designed to allow users at different locations to simultaneously view a full length HD video and interactively control the media streaming session. To create a sustainable media stream with high quality, our system supports UDP packet loss recovery at high transmission speed using custom File- Buffers. Traditional real-time streaming protocols such as Real-time Transport Protocol/RTP Control Protocol (RTP/RTCP) provide no such error recovery mechanism. Finally, the system also features an Instant Messenger that allows users to perform social interactions with one another while they enjoy a media file. The ultimate goal of the application is to offer users a hassle free way to watch a media file over long distances without having to upload any personal information into a third party database. Moreover, the users can communicate with each other and stream media directly from one mobile device to another while maintaining an independence from traditional sign up required by most streaming services.
© (2014) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Xunyu Pan, Kevin M. Free, "Interactive real-time media streaming with reliable communication", Proc. SPIE 9030, Mobile Devices and Multimedia: Enabling Technologies, Algorithms, and Applications 2014, 903008 (18 February 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2042388; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2042388
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