W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-web-perf@w3.org > December 2013

RE: detecting connection speed

From: Aaron Heady (BING AVAILABILITY) <aheady@microsoft.com>
Date: Wed, 4 Dec 2013 19:44:39 +0000
To: Jatinder Mann <jmann@microsoft.com>, James Graham <james@hoppipolla.co.uk>, "public-web-perf@w3.org" <public-web-perf@w3.org>
Message-ID: <365d16ded40d419f9a2a6950235b044c@BLUPR03MB278.namprd03.prod.outlook.com>
We look at data over time to create buckets of IP ranges that are very reliably in high or low performance ranges. That could take into account the RTT or page load provided by W3C timing, the page load time as detected by JavaScript clocks, specific tests by downloading and measuring the classic fixed size object and looking at network statistics, etc. Deciding how to apply that knowledge is a whole different can of worms. 

In my experience, determining it on a per request basis just has too much variance. Maybe if the UA kept its own set of statistics on a per origin IP + current default gateway basis and knew that it was generally good or bad for a given connection pair then it could pass that hint along, maybe include a confidence hint with it (fast last 99 of 100 connections). If that mobile device thinks it is always fast to an IP given its current proxy, then it most likely is. 


-----Original Message-----
From: Jatinder Mann [mailto:jmann@microsoft.com] 
Sent: Wednesday, December 4, 2013 11:20 AM
To: James Graham; public-web-perf@w3.org
Subject: RE: detecting connection speed

I generally agree with James that this is a difficult problem to solve. I'd love to hear use cases and how this data will actually help.

Something not made clear in this thread is are we asking for data to make runtime decisions or historical data for post processing like the Timing APIs? If post processing, what do you plan to achieve with the data considering the variability, e.g., a single browsing session could have been on many different connection speeds? Are you trying to make some sort of correlation like most of your users appear to be on 3G so you'll optimize your site for that type of user?


-----Original Message-----
From: James Graham [mailto:james@hoppipolla.co.uk]
Sent: Tuesday, December 3, 2013 8:16 AM
To: public-web-perf@w3.org
Subject: Re: detecting connection speed

On 03/12/13 16:04, Philippe Le Hegaret wrote:
> On Wed, 2013-11-27 at 09:38 +0000, Puneet Mohan Sangal wrote:
>> Is there any ongoing work in detecting connection speed, as part of 
>> this group?
>> See http://www.w3.org/TR/system-info-api/#network and
>> http://www.w3.org/2012/11/performance-workshop/report.html#i4

> The short answer is no one is working on it in the web performance 
> working group at the moment. I don't quickly see any visible progress 
> on the Network Information API for the past 12 months but you may want 
> to ask them if there were progress or not.

Detecting connection speed in a useful way is a very difficult problem, not least because it's often a time varying quantity (consider a mobile device that might switch between wifi, 3G, 3G but with high packet loss, and no signal at all, all in the course of interacting with a single page). I think that in general trying to expose this kind of data can lead to worse user experiences than not exposing it (e.g. if pages erroneously shift into some sort of "low bandwidth" mode due to some temporary network congestion or whatever). Therefore I don't think this should be something that we expose, unless it is clear that we can do it in a good way that will solve actual problems.

Received on Wednesday, 4 December 2013 19:45:08 UTC

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