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Performance assessment of fountain-coded schemes for progressive packet recovery

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Abstract

Fountain codes are gradually being incorporated into broadcast technologies, such as multimedia streaming for 4G mobile communications. In this paper, we investigate the capability of existing fountain-coded schemes to recover a fraction of the source data at an early stage and progressively retrieve the remaining source packets as additional coded packets arrive. To this end, we propose a practical Gaussian elimination decoder, which can recover source packets "on-the-fly". Furthermore, we introduce a framework for the assessment of progressive packet recovery, we carry out a performance comparison of the investigated schemes and we discuss the advantages and drawbacks of each scheme.