The next-generation of CDN needs to give service providers much greater control over bandwidth priorities in the home, Alcatel-Lucent believes. If there are multiple devices competing for bandwidth, you need to be able to say that a connected television needs priority for streaming and that a smartphone should be given a lower bitrate stream, for example.
“Service providers need a way to control the quality that is delivered to every screen and that is not possible today with adaptive bitrate streaming,” Mestric explains. “So in the CDN we will include a session manager that makes the CDN aware of all the different devices and session requests so that if you start to watch video on an iPhone and there is no congestion in the access network you will get the highest bitrate possible, but if someone else in the family turns on a connected TV device the service provider can then limit the bitrate profiles that can be accessed by the iPhone, for instance.”
Mestric points out that session prioritization could be useful if there is contention on mobile networks. Then a content provider could prioritize a premium subscriber over a basic subscriber so they get the higher bitrate if there is no chance to provide them both with the best possible experience.