WebQoE: perceptual evaluation of Web browsing


The World Wide Web is still among the most prominent Internet applications. While the Web landscape has been in perpetual movement since the very beginning, these last few years have witnessed some noteworthy proposals such as SPDY, HTTP/2 and QUIC which could disrupt the Web status quo and profoundly reshape the protocols family at application layer. We’re working toward the definition and assessment of objective metrics (such as SpeedIndex, Above-The-Fold and variants) related to quality of user experience [ATF-17],[SIGCOMM-QoE-16],[INFOCOM-IC-16],[GLOBECOM-03] and on gathering subjective user feedback [PAM-17].

In all cases, we make our  code and dataset available below!


  •  We have devised an approximation of Above-the-Fold (ATF) metric and released an implementation as a chrome plugin (see  Code section), as well as 9,000 MOS points used to verify the match with user QoE (see  Dataset section). Please see our technical report [ATF-17] for further details and have a look at the following video.

ObjectIndex and ByteIndex


n particular we propose in [SIGCOMM-QoE-16] two replacement metrics for Google’s SpeedIndex, namely ObjectIndex and ByteIndex, that are structurally similar to the SpeedIndex but tremendously simpler to compute. In a nutshell we argue that, to some extent, the objects (or bytes) that are received by the browser (or the network card) can provide a first approximation of the visual completeness of the rendering process. We test SpeedIndex, ObjectIndex and ByteIndex (along with other metrics) on the Alexa top-100 dataset, finding high levels of correlation among these metrics as shown in the arc diagram


Above the Fold (ATF)

Arguing for limitations of SpeedIndex match to faithfully represent user QoE, more recently we proposed [ATF-17] a simple way to approximate Google’s Above-the-Fold (ATF) time. By coupling the ATF knowledge to refine the SpeedIndex and ByteIndex-like metrics, to gather a closer match of user quality of experience measured with subjective tests  (see the MOS section below). As in the example out of the 154 images in the page, only 8 are direclty visible “above the fold”:  the time it takes to download and render these images (5.37s) is much lower than the time it takes to download all the data in the page (16.11s). However the user will just notice the above the fold content in a first time.

 We have designed and implemented an approximation of Google’s Above-the-Fold (ATF) metric.

  • you can find a description of the approximation in [ATF-17] along with a thorough testing against ITU-T and IQX models, and data-driven models built on the dataset using standard machine-learning techniques
  • the code, from which a screenshot is shown above, is available above on GitHub https://github.com/TeamRossi/ATF-chrome-plugin

User Mean Opinion Score (MOS)

In [PAM-17], we  collect over 4,000 subjective MOS metrics to contrast HTTP/1.1 vs HTTP/2 from a user viewpoint. We have complemented this measurement campaign for our Above the Fold (ATF) work, collecting over 9,000 MOS points  [ATF-17]. You can grab these datasets below!

  • We have been collecting more MOS points, and plan to release two datasets soon:
  • We have released the dataset of our [PAM-17] paper, accounting for over 4,000 MOS points:
    •  [466KB compressed, 24MB raw] webmos-pam17.arff.gz (20 downloads, md5sum: ff286e98d3d9bc6524ef3929928044eb)
    •  a more detailed (ugly) description of the dataset is available in the [DIRECTORSCUT-16] technical report (however shall you use the dataset please cite [PAM-17], thanks!)


Few more details are available  at the dedicated WebQoE page.

Latest publications


Bocchi, Enrico; Cicco, Luca De; Mellia, Marco; Rossi, Dario

The Web, the Users, and the MOS: Influence of HTTP/2 on User Experience Conference

Passive and Active Measurements, 2017, (keyword: QoE; Quality of Experience; DOM; onLoad; TTFB; TTFP; Abovethe-fold; SpeedIndex; ByteIndex; ObjectIndex; MOS).

Abstract | Links | BibTeX


Bocchi, Enrico; Cicco, Luca De; Rossi, Dario

Measuring the Quality of Experience of Web users Conference

ACM SIGCOMM Workshop on QoE-based Analysis and Management of Data Communication Networks (Internet-QoE 2016),, 2016, (keywords: Quality of Experience; DOM; onLoad; TTFB; TTFP; Above- the-fold; SpeedIndex; ByteIndex; ObjectIndex; MOS. Note: Selected as Best Paper in the workshop for reprint in ACM SIGCOMM Comput. Commun. Rev.).

Abstract | Links | BibTeX