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Interactive WiFi Connectivity for Moving Vehicles

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Executive Summary

The author asks if the ubiquity of WiFi can be leveraged to provide cheap connectivity from moving vehicles for common applications such as Web browsing and VoIP. Driven by this question, the paper conducts a study of connection quality available to vehicular WiFi clients based on measurements from testbeds in two different cities. The paper finds that current WiFi handoff methods, in which clients communicate with one basestation at a time, lead to frequent disruptions in connectivity. The paper also finds that clients can overcome many disruptions by communicating with multiple basestations simultaneously. These findings lead one to develop ViFi, a protocol that opportunistically exploits basestation diversity to minimize disruptions and support interactive applications for mobile clients.

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