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Voice communication systems such as Voice-over IP (VoIP), Public Switched Telephone Networks, and Mobile Telephone Networks, are an integral means of human tele-interaction. These systems pose distinctive challenges due to their unique characteristics such as low volume, burstiness and stringent delay/loss requirements across heterogeneous underlying network technologies. Effective quality evaluation methodologies are important for system development and refinement, particularly by adopting user feedback based measurement. Presently, most of the evaluation models are system-centric (Quality of Service or QoS-based), which questioned us to explore a user-centric (Quality of Experience or QoE-based) approach as a step towards the human-centric paradigm of system design. We research an affect-based QoE evaluation framework which attempts to capture users' perception while they are engaged in voice communication. Our modular approach consists of feature extraction from multiple information sources including various affective cues and different classification procedures such as Support Vector Machines (SVM) and k-Nearest Neighbor (kNN). The experimental study is illustrated in depth with detailed analysis of results. The evidences collected provide the potential feasibility of our approach for QoE evaluation and suggest the consideration of human affective attributes in modeling user experience.


This article was originally published in Biomed Human-centric Computing and Information Sciences 2012, 2:7.

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