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Difference between LAN and WAN

LAN and WAN are the most common terminologies that relate to the internet. LAN is the acronym of Local Area Network, while WAN is the acronym of Wide Area Network. The differences between the two are of various aspects. WiFi that we often use at our home, office, or any other place such as a restaurant uses LAN for connectivity. However, the WAN is the network for communication that utilizes satellites, optic wires, etc.


Network Coverage 

The computer network responsible for covering a small geographic area such as a group of buildings, offices, and homes is known as LAN. It defines much about the areas of its coverage that is a limited one. Hence, the internet connectivity offered by LAN is up to the location in which it is present. However, WAN differs from LAN in terms of coverage. It is a significant compute network that has got more hype due to its broad coverage. It covers a wide area and delivers the network facility to it. It’s responsible for linking the metropolitan boundaries and cross-region over a massive distance. Hence, it has made communication much flexible and easier.

Data Transfer Rate

The data transfer rate link with the better performance and quality of the network that it offers. LAN is limited to a certain area, and hence its transfer rate is much more. It is a swift network as it does not have to travel much distance. However, WAN is the network that connects enormous remote areas, and hence the transfer of the data is low compared to LAN.

Maintenance and Design

The maintenance and design of LAN are easy, while on the contrary to this, the maintenance and design for the WAN are complex. WAN offers less fault tolerance, while LAN comes up with more fault tolerance. LAN is the one that uses peculiar connectivity technologies such as token, Ethernet, etc. However, WAN is the one that utilizes the technologies that are meant for longer distances. These include X.25 and Frame Relay.

Ownership: Difference between lan and wan

There is a private owner for LAN as anyone can get LAN for their home or office. They can secure it with the use of a password. Hence, the users can access it when they use the particular code on their device. However, WAN is for a wider area and can have public or private ownership. 

Cost: Difference between lan and wan

LAN is the most relaxing and valuable communication network that does not demand more money to set up enormous devices. However, in the case of WAN, there is network communication to the remote area, so it is much costly to set up new devices on it. 

Also read: Difference between orbit and orbital


It is optimally necessary for the compute science students to get their concepts clearer. Indeed, they must know the differences in different terminologies to excel in their career. LAN and WAN are common terminologies that they encounter the most. However, there does exist the hybrid of both of the networks, which is papular as WLAN. It is the one having the features of both networks.



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