2 QoE−Defining a User-Centric Concept for Service Quality

Martín Varela1, Lea Skorin-Kapov2, Katrien De Moor3 and Peter Reichl4

1VTT Technical Research Centre, Finland

2University of Zagreb, Croatia

3NTNU, Trondheim, Norway

4Université Européenne de Bretagne/Télécom Bretagne, France and University of Vienna, Austria

2.1 Introduction

Quality of Experience (QoE) has, in recent years, gained a prominent role in the research and related work of several fields, notably networking and multimedia, but also in other domains such as network economics, gaming, or telemedicine. It has, to some extent, also become a buzzword for marketers, network operators, and other service providers.

Historically, its origins can be traced to several sources, which are nowadays converging toward a common, mature understanding of what QoE actually is. Several of the key ideas behind QoE can be traced several decades back to research done, for example, by telephone operators into the quality of calls made through their systems, and of TV broadcasters in a quest to understand how users perceived the quality of television pictures. The issues involved here relate not only to the transmission aspects, but also to coding and equipment ones.

With the advent of Internet-based multimedia communication services, such as Voice over IP (VoIP), video streaming, video conferencing, etc., the role of the network's performance (often referred to as Quality of Service, QoS) became more important in determining the perceived ...

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