As smartphones and other small portable devices become more sophisticated and popular, opportunities for communication and information sharing among such device users have increased. In particular, since it is known that infrastructure-less device-to-device (D2D) communication platforms consisting only of such devices are excellent in terms of, for example, bandwidth efficiency, efforts are being made to merge their information sharing capabilities with conventional infrastructure. However, efficient multi-hop communication is difficult with the D2D communication protocol, and many conventional D2D communication platforms require modifications of the protocol and terminal operating systems (OSs). In response to these issues, this paper reports on a proposed tree-structured D2D communication platform for Android devices that combines Wi-Fi Direct and Wi-Fi functions. The proposed platform, which is expected to be used with general Android 4.0 (or higher) OS equipped terminals, makes it possible to construct an ad hoc network instantaneously without sharing prior knowledge among participating devices. We will show the feasibility of our proposed platform through its design and demonstrate the implementation of a prototype using real devices. In addition, we will report on our investigation into communication delays and stability based on the number of hops and on terminal performance through experimental confirmation experiments.
Keywords: Wi-Fi direct; android; device-to-device; multi-hop communication; smartphone.