Coterie: Exploiting Frame Similarity to Enable High-Quality Multiplayer VR on Commodity Mobile Devices

Session: Mobile/intermittent applications--Off and on again?

Authors: Jiayi Meng (Purdue University); Sibendu Paul (Purdue University); Y. Hu (Purdue University)

In this paper, we study how to support high-quality immersive multiplayer VR on commodity mobile devices. First, we perform a scaling experiment that shows simply replicating the prior-art 2-layer distributed VR rendering architecture to multiple players cannot support more than one player due to the linear increase in network bandwidth requirement. Second, we propose to exploit the similarity of background environment (BE) frames to reduce the bandwidth needed for prefetching BE frames from the server, by caching and reusing similar frames. We find that there is often little similarly between the BE frames of even adjacent locations in the virtual world due to a “near-object” effect. We propose a novel technique that splits the rendering of BE frames between the mobile device and the server that drastically enhances the similarity of the BE frames and reduces the network load from frame caching. Evaluation of our implementation on top of Unity and Google Daydream shows our new VR framework, Coterie, reduces per-player network requirement by 10.6X-25.7X and easily supports 4 players for high-resolution VR apps on Pixel 2 over 802.11ac, with 60 FPS and under 16ms responsiveness.