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Authors: Christos Zarafetas, Nikos Makris, Apostolos Apostolaras, Thanasis Korakis and Leandros Tassiulas

Conference:  13th IEEE TELSIKS 2017, Nis, Serbia, 18-20 October 2017.

Abstract: Ultra dense networks are expected to be the vehicle for better network coverage featuring higher speeds, augmented network capacity and more per cell end-users served.  Towards meeting these stiff requirements, cells of varying coverage (pico-/femto-/macro- cells) are being deployed, especially in densely populated urban areas. Considering the high availability of such equipment, as well as the low deployment and maintenance costs of WLAN networks, an ecosystem rich in heterogeneity may assist in extending the overall network capacity, thus enabling throughput-hungry services to be offered over contemporary networks. The solution that is considered in this paper is offloading macro-cell users to the available wireless networks in a geographical area, while meeting their demands for the downlink channel. We model our problem and present an applied framework that facilitates cross-technology offloading. Our solution is making use of Software Defined Networking, thus enabling the very rapid and low latency network switching. We experimentally evaluate and benchmark our framework in a real testbed setup, and present our findings.

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