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Assessment of the IEEE 802.11e EDCA Protocol Limitations when Dealing with Real-Time Communication

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Executive Summary

The timing behavior of the EDCA mechanism defined in the IEEE 802.11e standard is analyzed. More specifically, the target of this paper is to evaluate the limitations of the highest priority level of the EDCA mechanism (voice category) when supporting Real-Time (RT) communication. By RT communication, the authors mean small-sized packets generated in periodic intervals that must be delivered before the end of the message stream period. Otherwise, the message is considered to be delayed and a deadline loss occurs. They have assessed the EDCA mechanism considering an open communication environment, where both RT and non-RT stations share the same frequency band.

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