Video Quality Measured in Subscriber's QoE
The growing demand for video consumption in the world of online content is also driving the increased focus on video quality. Simply offering multimedia experiences means nothing if those experiences are not the quality expected by the consumer.
The true key to measuring the quality of service (QoS), according to this report, is to measure the right parameters at the appropriate network places. Essentially, the service provider only has one chance to get it right in video quality. And, given the complexities and unique elements present in video delivery networks, it can be a challenge to deliver on expectations and drive that competitive advantage.
In fact, the video delivery chain is very long and complicated, which increases the complexity and opportunity for complications. The video starts by sourcing at the headend, complex MPEG manipulations through the edge, a number of network elements within the IP transport, the HFC that is prone to errors and various digital subscriber loop access networks. Even problems within the home network can affect overall video quality.
To address the problems with video quality, the industry has created a number of metrics to measure the quality of video service. This approach now determines the acceptable tolerances for creation and transcoding video service. The accepted tolerance levels in QoS determine how a problem might impact a subscriber. The Quality of Experience (QoE), however, relates to the exact experience the subscriber is having when consuming video.
In this Mixed Signals piece, the idea that multichannel service providers must be able to provide exceptional audio and video quality to subscribers was explored. With competition at an all-time high, subscribers have a number of options in the market and one poor video quality experience could send them running for another provider.
To address video quality issues, the Video and Audio Quality of Experience is used to score the satisfaction level of the TV viewer. Scores are based on hundreds of video and audio PIDs gathered from human perceptual analysis. The score is automatically reduced if an issue occurs that affects the video quality for the viewing subscriber. Any score less than 100 indicates a degrading experience for the viewer.
According to this AVVASI report, 50 percent of all traffic is video traffic, which projections it will hit 70 percent in the next few years. When bandwidth is strained, playback is stalled or poor video fidelity is present, consumer frustration grows. Even with these figures, nearly 75 percent of mobile video consumers have experienced QoE problems, and 63 percent are willing to pay for added services that will enhance video quality.
There is real opportunity here for providers who can deliver on video quality expectations and drive consumer adoption. The true focus will have to be not just on QoS, but also on the QoE.
Susan J. Campbell is a contributing editor for TMCnet and has also written for eastbiz.com. To read more of Susan’s articles, please visit her columnist page.
Edited by Jennifer Russell