Technology Choices and Pricing Policies in Wireless Networks

  • Yuanzhang Xiao
  • William R. Zame
  • Mihaela van der Schaar
Part of the Lecture Notes of the Institute for Computer Sciences, Social Informatics and Telecommunications Engineering book series (LNICST, volume 75)


This paper studies the provision of a wireless network by a monopolistic provider who may be either benevolent (seeking to maximize social welfare) or selfish (seeking to maximize provider profit). The paper addresses the following questions: Under what circumstances is it feasible for a provider, either benevolent or selfish, to operate a network in such a way as to cover costs? How is the optimal behavior of a benevolent provider different from the optimal behavior of a selfish provider, and how does this difference affect social welfare? And, most importantly, how does the medium access control (MAC) technology influence the answers to these questions? To address these questions, we build a general model, and provide analysis and simulations for simplified but typical scenarios; the focus in these scenarios is on the contrast between the outcomes obtained under carrier-sensing multiple access (CSMA) and outcomes obtained under time-division multiple access (TDMA). Simulation results demonstrate that differences in MAC technology can have a significant effect on social welfare, on provider profit, and even on the (financial) feasibility of a wireless network.


network economics pricing wireless networks 


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Copyright information

© ICST Institute for Computer Science, Social Informatics and Telecommunications Engineering 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yuanzhang Xiao
    • 1
  • William R. Zame
    • 2
  • Mihaela van der Schaar
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Electrical EngineeringUCLALos AngelesUSA
  2. 2.Department of EconomicsUCLALos AngelesUSA

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