Improvements to seamless vertical handover between mobile WiMAX and 3GPP UTRAN through the evolved packet core

William J. Song, Jong Moon Chung, Daeyoung Lee, Chaegwon Lim, Sungho Choi, Taesun Yeoum

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Citations (Scopus)


Recent mobile devices are integrated with multiple network interfaces. Users want their devices connected to the network anytime anywhere. It is highly feasible for a user to change connection to another network for users that leave the service area of its current serving network, where handover needs to be executed seamlessly such that ongoing service sessions are not interrupted. The handover operation not only requires switching the interfaces within a device but also involves seamless reconfiguration of the supporting networks. In this article, an improved IP-based vertical handover technology for mobile WiMAX [1, 2], 3GPP legacy systems (i.e., Global System for Mobile communications and Universal Mobile Telecommunications System) [3, 4], and 3G Long Term Evolution [5, 6] is presented, which is based on existing optimized handover techniques between mobile WiMAX and 3GPP accesses [7-9]. Formerly proposed 3GPP WiMAX optimized VHO solutions introduced new elements, such as the forward attachment function and access network discovery and selection function. The ANDSF supports the discovery of target access, and the FAF provides the functionality that authenticates the UE before the execution of VHO. However, the previous technique has limitations that result in data loss and abnormal disconnection to the source access [7-9]. This article provides a solution by introducing an additional network element called the data forwarding function (DFF) that eliminates the data loss during VHO execution. In addition, the DFF resolves the problem of abrupt disconnection to the source network. The simulation results show that the proposed VHO technique is effective in minimizing data loss during VHO execution between mobile WiMAX and 3GPP networks. As the proposed solution of this article is an IP based handover solution, it can be similarly applied to other communication networks.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)66-73
Number of pages8
JournalIEEE Communications Magazine
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2009

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The presented technolo gies are patent pending by Samsung Electronics Co. LTD. This research was sponsored by Samsung Electronics Co. LTD.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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