The high cost of IEEE 802.11p-compliant devices and the lack of a widely adopted standard motivate the search for alternative methods for vehicular communication. As a consequence, and due to the ubiquity of smartphones, we see an increasing number of proposals based on Wi-Fi Direct, especially related to the integration of pedestrians in VANETs. Nevertheless, given the complexity of real experimentation, it is difficult to assess the ability of Wi-Fi Direct to offer connectivity in the vehicular environment on a large scale, leading to the evaluation through simulation. In order to verify the ability of a simulation model of reproducing the Wi-Fi Direct behavior, we analyze the performance of a safety application based on the communication range, packet delivery rate, and packet inter-reception time. In V2P scenarios, with and without line of sight, with varying vehicle speed, measurements using smartphones are performed and their results compared with those of OMNeT++ simulator. The results indicate, apart from the simulator’s accuracy, that the connection establishment time hinders the use of Wi-Fi Direct as a replacement to 802.11p. As an outcome of this observation, we evaluate a new transmission method for Wi-Fi Direct based on beacon stuffing, which mitigates the long connection establishment issue.
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