Both the LAN and the WAN are types of data networks with one significant difference in their operational scale.

Local Area Networks (or LANs) are primarily intended for communicating within a room or building. Whereas, wide area networks (or WANs) are used to exchange traffic between various buildings, cities, or even countries.

Going for a WAN over LAN for your business operations may help you facilitate the communication between your official branches allowing your employees to work remotely with sheer ease, comfort, and organization.

Additionally, there are also a few more benefits. But before we get into all that, let’s discuss a few of the basic things first for the sake of our explanation. So let’s begin without any further ado.


Often found in schools, homes, or small-scale businesses, a local area network allows the computers in the location to connect to a local network and share information among themselves.

Most offices are usually equipped with a LAN, and chances are you, yourself, may also have one in your own home using a DSL router for connecting multiple computers with one another and the internet.

A WAN, on the other hand, allows computers in various locations, cities, and even countries to be networked together according to their specific connectivity needs and share information at one, and the same time.



Reach: Local

Reach: Global

Works internally.

Works internationally.

Comparatively simple.

Comparatively complex.

Easy to install.

Difficult to install.

Benefits of LAN Over WAN

  • Scale

As I said, the principal advantage of WAN over LAN lies in its size.

By connecting multiple websites together, local area networks allow communication between entities on various sides of the country or even the world.

This can be indefinitely beneficial to businesses, enabling them to centralize important operations like stock control.

Technically, it’s close to impossible to achieve such feat with a local area network (LAN). So naturally, as far as scalability is concerned, WAN wins it hands down.

  • Easy transfer of information between all locations around the world

With the aid of a WAN, you will be able to transfer files and data between all your locations and even with your partners from New York to London, from London to Beijing, and from Beijing to Delhi, all without leaving the comfort of your executive office chair.

And then, if data security becomes an issue for you, you may transfer your information through a wireless VPN for maximum safety and convenience.

Unfortunately, you cannot do these things with a local area network, and thus, WAN wins again by a huge margin.

  • Easy remote accessibility

A wide area network can be used to access network resources remotely, that may be inclusive of other LANs and WANs.

For e.g.,

WAN makes it possible for employers to allow their employees access their official network from the comfort of their home through the aid of an internet connection. This helps in facilitating flexible working hours which may also simultaneously increase the overall productivity of the workplace.

  • The Price Tag

Wide area networks call for the use of a public infrastructure. Meaning, connecting people on WAN can be less costly than connecting them on LAN.

This is another benefit that can seldom be matched by anything else.

So, as you can see from the points above, a wide area network surpasses its local counterpart by quite a distance. To know more about WAN benefits in more precise detail, refer to the infographic below:

Source- Inspire WiFi