The POINT team have successfully completed a series of closed trials at the headquarters of project partner PrimeTel in Cyprus.

The purpose of these trials was to prove that POINT technology can improve the Quality of Experience (QoE) of users receiving conventional multimedia services, when compared to that which is currently available using traditional IP.

In the first part of the trial, users were asked to watch HLS (HTTP Live Streaming) content provided via a traditional IP network, and compare it to content streaming over a POINT enabled network. We applied a series of exceptional circumstances to the stream to simulate what would happen when the network became congested. Over IP the quality and resolution of the content reduced and became “blocky”, over POINT the content appeared unaffected as the network simply shifted the stream closer to the user.

In the second part of the trial, users were asked to watch live television channels served over IPTV – again, first the content travelled over a traditional IP network and second it travelled over a POINT enabled network. This time, the POINT researchers applied exceptional circumstances to simulate a link being broken and then repaired in the network. Over IP, when the connection broken, the content transmission failed and took several minutes to identify another route and connect to it. The same occured when the original link was restored. This led to users becoming frustrated, meaning their QoE was low. However, over the POINT enabled network, the content was simply rerouted and the users did not experience any content failures – meaning their QoE and level of enjoyment of the content was much higher.

As well as using traditional techniques – such as interviews and questionnaires – to gather the user’s responses, we also pioneered the use of EEG (electroencephalogram) headsets to read users brainwave patterns. This enabled us to measure how levels of frustration increase subconsciously when users are faced with the kinds of exceptional conditions they experienced during the trials, and which can be alleviated through the use of POINT.

All the users who took part in the trials were able to clearly see the differences between content delivered over traditional IP networks, and POINT enabled networks. Full results from the POINT trials will available in D5.3 which will be published on our website in April 2018.