Urban WiFi characterization via mobile crowdsensing

Arsham Farshad, Mahesh K. Marina, Francisco J. Garcia

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


We present a mobile crowdsensing approach for urban WiFi characterization that leverages commodity smartphones and the natural mobility of people. Specifically, we report measurement results obtained for Edinburgh, a representative European city, on detecting the presence of deployedWiFi APs via the mobile crowdsensing approach. They show that few channels in 2.4GHz are heavily used; in contrast, there is hardly any activity in the 5GHz band even though relatively it has a greater number of available channels. Spatial analysis of spectrum usage reveals that mutual interference among nearby APs operating in the same channel can be a serious problem with around 10 APs contending with each other in many locations. We find that the characteristics of WiFi deployments at city-scale are similar to that of WiFi deployments in public spaces of different indoor environments. We validate our approach in comparison with wardriving, and also show that our findings generally match with previous studies based on other measurement approaches. As an application of the mobile crowdsensing based urban WiFi monitoring, we outline a cloud based WiFi router configuration service for better interference management with global awareness in urban areas.

Urban WiFi characterization via mobile crowdsensing. Available from: http://www.researchgate.net/publication/269300609_Urban_WiFi_characterization_via_mobile_crowdsensing [accessed Aug 10, 2015].
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2014 IEEE Network Operations and Management Symposium, NOMS 2014, Krakow, Poland, May 5-9, 2014
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 2014


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