Measurement-based usage charges in communication networks

Costas Courcoubetis, Richard Weber, Frank Kelly

Operations Research 48 (2000) 535-548.


We study usage-sensitive charging schemes for broadband communications networks. We argue that a connection's `effective bandwidth' is a good proxy for the quantity of network resource that the connection consumes and can be the basis for a usage charge. However, the determination of effective bandwidth can be problematic, since it involves the moment generating function of the cell arrival process, which may be difficult to model or measure. This paper describes methods of computing usage charges from simple measurements and relating these to bounds on the effective bandwidth. Thus we show that charging for usage on the basis of effective bandwidths can be well-approximated by charges based on simple measurements.

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