SoftNet: A software defined decentralized mobile network architecture toward 5G

Mobile cloud computing and other new emerging communication paradigms such as mobile socialnetworking and Internet-of-Things, have brought challenges in flexibility, efficiency, and scalability to the current LTE network. Inspired by thinking of the fundamental mechanisms in LTE as reasons causing those problems, SoftNet, a software defined decentralized mobile network architecture toward 5G, is proposed in this article following principles proposed for designing an efficient and scalable network.

The analysis of the working mechanisms of SoftNet, including its dynamically defined architecture, decentralized mobility management, distributed data forwarding, and multi-RATs coordination, show that SoftNet has improved system capacity and performance. Further, simulations are conducted to demonstrate that signaling cost in SoftNet, as an important performance metric, can be decreased significantly compared with LTE networks.

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