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Content-Centric Collaborative Edge Caching in 5G Mobile Internet


In recent years, mobile network operators (MNOs) are suffering from the traffic explosion problem caused by the rapid increase in demands for multimedia contents over the Internet. However, a significant portion of such demands is for popular contents that are delivered to users through duplicated transmissions, which unnecessarily consume extra network bandwidth. To sustain continued growth in such demands, mobile applications should undergo a fundamental shift, from the conventional “connectivity-oriented” model to a more “content-centric” one, in order to more efficiently utilize the limited network bandwidth.  

As a potential solution to the above problem, the innovative concept of “integrated in-network caching” has recently been attracting a lot of attention in the wireless networking community. This offers a new paradigm of bringing contents nearer to mobile users through collaborative caching and forwarding strategies at the edges or last-hops of the mobile network, so that users’ demands can be satisfied with better efficiency and higher quality of service. From a practical perspective, there are many ways in which content caching technology can be deployed in the edges of wireless mobile networks, e.g., popular videos can be cached in base stations serving densely populated areas to reduce backhaul traffic by avoiding duplicated transmissions, and emergency messages can be cached in mobile devices for sharing among people in proximity via Device-to-Device (D2D) transmissions to offload mobile traffic. Many researchers in academia and industry are now directing their efforts on addressing problems such as how to design efficient caching schemes and algorithms to accommodate the expanding mobile services, how to deploy collaborative caching functions at base stations and mobile devices for balancing multiple optimization objectives, and how to practically integrate sustainable caching capabilities in the emerging 5G mobile Internet.

This special issue is looking for expositions on novel techniques and technologies in content-centric wireless mobile networks incorporating caching in the edges of the network at base stations, femtocells/small cells, mobile devices, etc., from the perspectives of caching algorithm designs, caching systems implementation and integration, cache modeling and optimization, etc. Topics of interests include, but are not limited to, the following areas:

  • Theoretical modeling and performance analysis for caching in wireless networks
  • Caching within front-haul and back-haul networks
  • Integration of ICN/CCN with legacy mobile network systems
  • Practical deployments of caching within small cells and other edge devices
  • Cooperative base station caching in tier (hierarchical) heterogeneous networks
  • Caching autonomous management and service harmonization
  • Enhanced caching algorithm with modeling and performance analysis
  • Big data-based caching over wireless networks
  • Base station caching with D2D caching and relaying mechanism
  • Caching with cross-layer consolidation of interference and resource management
  • Theoretical caching framework and practical caching implementations for 5G
  • Convergence of caching with NFV/SDN, cloud computing, fog computing, IoT etc.
  • Security, trust, privacy and identity in cache-enabled wireless and mobile networks
  • Edge computing and caching techniques for 5G
  • Ad-hoc collaborative caching for D2D networks
  • Incentive-based caching and sharing schemes


Xiaofei Wang, Tianjin University, China
Tarik Taleb, Aalto University, Finland
Zhu Han, University of Houston, USA
Shugong Xu, Shanghai University, China
Victor C. M. Leung, The University of British Columbia, Canada