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Network Working Group                                           S. Zhang
Internet-Draft                                                    C. Cao
Intended status: Informational                              China Unicom
Expires: December 24, 2020                                       S. Peng
                                                                   Z. Li
                                                                  Huawei
                                                           June 22, 2020


  Use cases of Application-aware Networking (APN) in Game Acceleration
                draft-zhang-apn-acceleration-usecase-00

Abstract

   With the development of the Internet, game industry has risen
   rapidly, from handheld game consoles to PC games and mobile games.
   The types of games are diversified, while the number of game users is
   increasing year by year.  The game market is maturing quickly.

   Nowadays, the scale of game users is large and they belong to the
   easy-to-consume groups.  Among all the games, those require frequent
   interactions and involve video streaming usually have highly
   demanding requirements on the network in terms of guaranteed network
   latency and reliability.  Therefore, from the aspect of ensuring
   better gaming experience, it is desirable of differentiating the
   particular gaming application flows and providing high-priority
   network services for those demanding gamers.

   This document describes the game acceleration scenarios using
   Application-aware Networking (APN) technology.  In these scenarios,
   APN can identify the specific requirements of particular gaming
   applications, steer the flows to the game processors close to the
   users, and provide SLA guaranteed network services such as low
   latency and high reliability.

Requirements Language

   The key words "MUST", "MUST NOT", "REQUIRED", "SHALL", "SHALL NOT",
   "SHOULD", "SHOULD NOT", "RECOMMENDED", "MAY", and "OPTIONAL" in this
   document are to be interpreted as described in RFC 2119 [RFC2119].

Status of This Memo

   This Internet-Draft is submitted in full conformance with the
   provisions of BCP 78 and BCP 79.

   Internet-Drafts are working documents of the Internet Engineering
   Task Force (IETF).  Note that other groups may also distribute



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   working documents as Internet-Drafts.  The list of current Internet-
   Drafts is at https://datatracker.ietf.org/drafts/current/.

   Internet-Drafts are draft documents valid for a maximum of six months
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   This Internet-Draft will expire on December 24, 2020.

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   Copyright (c) 2020 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the
   document authors.  All rights reserved.

   This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal
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   described in the Simplified BSD License.

Table of Contents

   1.  Introduction  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   2
   2.  Usage Scenarios of APN in Game Acceleration . . . . . . . . .   3
     2.1.  APN for Steering into Dedicated Game Acceleration Channel   3
     2.2.  Fine-granularity Interactive Action Game Acceleration . .   5
   3.  Game Acceleration Business Model  . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   6
   4.  Security Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   7
   5.  IANA Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   7
   6.  Normative References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   7
   Authors' Addresses  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   7

1.  Introduction

   Online games usually refer to games which use the access terminal PC
   or smart terminal as the game platform, the Internet as the data
   transmission medium, the game operator server as the processor, and
   through the WAN network transmission (e.g. mobile Internet), in which
   a single user or multiple users simultaneously participate to realize
   the operation of the game characters or scenes.

   The number of online game players is large in China, about more than
   700 million.  Gamers usually pursue very high quality of



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   experience(QoE).  At present, most gamers are willing to spend extra
   money to get a better user experience.

   The UDP protocol has good real-time performance and its network
   overhead is also small, through which high communication rate can be
   reached.  So the UDP protocol is mainly used in the real-time game
   interaction process.  Even if the operator uses DPI, it will not
   recognize UDP packets.

   Application-aware networking (APN) [I-D.li-apn-framework] enables the
   network to be aware of the applications' requirements in a fine
   granularity, and then either steer the corresponding traffic onto the
   appropriate network path that can satisfy the requirements or
   establish an exclusive network path which would not be influenced by
   other applications' traffic flow.

2.  Usage Scenarios of APN in Game Acceleration

   This section presents two typical game acceleration scenarios with
   APN to meet the service requirements and ensure user experience.

2.1.  APN for Steering into Dedicated Game Acceleration Channel

   Generally speaking, the network latency requirement of games is less
   than 30ms.  For competitive games, the latency requirement is less
   than 10ms.  According to the statistics of the domestic Steam
   platform in China (from 2018 Game Industry External Market
   Observation Report by Tencent PC game platform), overseas games
   account for a high proportion in TOP10 online games.  The traditional
   way to provide services is to connect with foreign operators through
   the operators international business network and directly access the
   game servers.  In this case, the latency will generally exceed 200ms.
   So in order to give users a better game experience, operators need to
   provide solutions to reduce latency for the gamers oversea.

   The games which are operated by domestic agents usually connect
   through a third-party acceleration server forming a dedicated
   acceleration channel to access the game servers in the Data Center,
   as shown in the Figure 1.












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      Client
     +------+     +------------+    +--------------------+    +--------+
     | Game |___\ |  Operator  |___\|    Third Party     |___\|  Data  |
     | Data |   / |   Network  |   /|Acceleration channel|   /| Center |
     +------+     +------------+    +--------------------+    +--------+


           Figure 1.A Third-party Acceleration Channel for Games

   If the operator provides services directly, in order to reduce the
   end-to-end latency, the operator's export gateway (Game Acceleration
   Router) is connected to the International POP to directly access the
   game servers in the Data Center,as shown in the Figure 2.  In this
   way, users can achieve quick access from domestic to the game servers
   overseas.


   Client
  +------+  +------------+  +------------+  +--------------+  +--------+
  | Game |  |  Operator  |  |    Game    |  | International|  |  Data  |
  | Data |->|  Network   |->|Acceleration|->|      PoP     |->| Center |
  |      |  |            |  |   Router   |  |              |  |        |
  +------+  +------------+  +------------+  +--------------+  +--------+


           Figure 2.The Operator Acceleration Channel for Games

   As shown in the Figure 3, with APN, according to the application-
   aware information carried in the packets, the game data can be
   differentiated and steered at the App-aware process Head-end into the
   dedicated game acceleration channel to achieve the desired low
   latency.


    Client
   +------+  +---------+  +------------+  +---------+  +------+
   | Game |  |App-aware|  |    Game    |  |App-aware|  | Data |
   | Data |->| process |--|Acceleration|--| process |->|Center|
   |      |  |Head-end |  |   Channel  |  |End point|  |      |
   +------+  +---------+  +------------+  +---------+  +------+


    Figure 3.APN for Steering into Dedicated Game Acceleration Channel

   Head-end node in the APN identifies the data flow of games (maybe one
   or more games), and steers it into a dedicated game acceleration path
   according to its SLA requirements.




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   Midpoint in the APN forwards game data stream along the path.

   The end point in the APN receives the game data stream and steers it
   to the data center for processing the users control instruction or to
   the user for playing.

   The whole process requires APN not only to identify the game traffic
   but also to provide customized network services for it, in order to
   achieve better gaming experience.

2.2.  Fine-granularity Interactive Action Game Acceleration

   In some interactive action games, some flows are more important than
   others since the packets in these flows are carrying action control
   instructions.  These flows have even lower latency requirement.

   With APN technology, these important data flows could be further
   indicated by adding corresponding information in the application-
   aware information.  According to this information, operators can
   provide paying users a game acceleration tunnel with ultra-low
   latency to guarantee the gaming experience of the users.

    Client A
   +---------+
   |Game Data|-\
   +---------+ |   +---------+   +------------+   +---------+  +------+
                \->|App-aware|-A-|    Game    |-A-|App-aware|  | Data |
                   | process |   |Acceleration|   | process |->|Center|
    Clinet B    /->|Head-end |-B-|    Path    |-B-|End point|  |      |
   +---------+ |   +---------+   +------------+   +---------+  +------+
   |Game Data|-/
   +---------+


                    Figure 4.Game Acceleration with APN

   As shown in the Figure 4, Client A and B are playing an interactive
   action game.  The head-end node in the APN identifies the data flow
   of an important scene in an action game sent by Client A, and steers
   it into a specific game acceleration path according to its SLA
   requirements.

   Midpoint in the APN forwards game data stream along the path and
   provides network services enabled by APN.

   The end point in the APN receives the game data stream and steers
   into the gaming server in the Data center, while the game server
   processes the game data and encapsulates the information for



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   identifying the game data stream of the important action scene at the
   head end node, which forwards it to a dedicated game acceleration
   path to the involved gamer Client B.

   During the game, different transmission paths are used to distinguish
   service effects.  In this way, highly customized and guaranteed
   services can be provided.

3.  Game Acceleration Business Model

   With the 5G era evolving, the emerging gaming mode will inject new
   vitality into the game market.

   VR, AR and other emerging technologies are widely used in the game
   field, which provide new human-computer interaction method, improve
   the immersive and realistic sense, and reshape the expression form
   and development direction of game products.  Based on cloud
   computing, cloud games emerge.  At present, there are 120 million
   domestic users of cloud games in China, and the number of users
   continues to increase.

   Cloud game deploys game applications in data centers, and realizes
   the functions including the logical process of game command control,
   video rendering and other tasks that have high requirements for
   chips, and the tasks of game acceleration.  In this way, the terminal
   is a video player.  Users can get a good game experience without the
   support of high-end system and chips.

   At present, in most cases, with centralized deployment, the network
   transmission distance is too long, which is a huge challenge to the
   network load, so the latency demand can't be met.

   For cloud games, operators and OTT vendors can cooperate with each
   other and adopt on-demand edge computing deployment methods.  The
   edge data center sends the game video stream information to the
   terminal, and receives the user's control instruction information for
   processing.  Users can make corresponding operation instructions
   according to the received video stream information, and get quick
   response.

   At the same time, APN technology is needed to ensure deterministic
   latency of multi-party network of multiple players.  The whole
   process requires APN not only to identify the cloud game traffic and
   provide customized network services for it, but also to ensure the
   deterministic latency of multi-user in the same game and provide
   better gaming experience.





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   For online games, as mentioned above, operators cooperate with the
   game agents, by choosing or creating a corresponding network path
   based on the application information carried in the APN packets,
   ensuring the corresponding SLA through SR acceleration tunnel, to
   provide highly customized and flexible services for applications and
   improve the quality of experience of users.

   Operators and OTTs cooperate with each other to achieve mutual
   benefit and win-win, so as to better provide customers with highly
   customized services and great QoE.

4.  Security Considerations

   The security consideration can refer to the [I-D.li-apn-framework].

5.  IANA Considerations

   There are no IANA considerations in this document.

6.  Normative References

   [I-D.li-apn-framework]
              Li, Z., Peng, S., Voyer, D., Li, C., Geng, L., Cao, C.,
              Ebisawa, K., Previdi, S., and J. Guichard, "Application-
              aware Networking (APN) Framework", draft-li-apn-
              framework-00 (work in progress), March 2020.

   [I-D.li-apn-problem-statement-usecases]
              Li, Z., Peng, S., Voyer, D., Xie, C., Liu, P., Qin, Z.,
              Ebisawa, K., Previdi, S., and J. Guichard, "Problem
              Statement and Use Cases of Application-aware Networking
              (APN)", draft-li-apn-problem-statement-usecases-00 (work
              in progress), March 2020.

   [RFC2119]  Bradner, S., "Key words for use in RFCs to Indicate
              Requirement Levels", BCP 14, RFC 2119,
              DOI 10.17487/RFC2119, March 1997,
              <https://www.rfc-editor.org/info/rfc2119>.

Authors' Addresses

   Shuai Zhang
   China Unicom
   Beijing  100048
   China

   Email: zhangs366@chinaunicom.cn




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   Chang Cao
   China Unicom
   Beijing  100048
   China

   Email: caoc15@chinaunicom.cn


   Shuping Peng
   Huawei
   Beijing  100053
   China

   Email: pengshuping@huawei.com


   Zhenbin Li
   Huawei
   Beijing  100053
   China

   Email: lizhenbin@huawei.com





























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