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Mobile multi-access IP: a proposal for mobile multi-access management in future wireless IP networks

As the wireless networking technologies advance rapidly, providing mobile users with roaming freely in heterogeneous wireless access domains, the need for multi-access arises. This paper introduces the Mobile Multi-Access Management Architecture (MMA-IP) for IP-based future wireless networks. MMA-IP enables mobile users to utilize multiple access domains synchronously and to switch between different access domains. In order to handle multi-access operations, MMA-IP defines a new special mobility agent, called Multi-Access Agent (MAA). The MAA is the first point for incoming packets destined to the mobile node. Upon reception of these packets, MAA routes them via different access domains according to the mobile's preferences. MMA-IP allows mobile nodes to indicate their preferences in the form of preference messages and these preferences are stored in MAA for use in multi-access decisions. It is also noted that this concept paper intends to shed light on future improvements on IP in 4G networks. (C) 2004 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.