Difference Between Personal Area Network and Local Area Network

Edited by Diffzy | Updated on: April 30, 2023


Difference Between Personal Area Network and Local Area Network

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You undoubtedly utilize a variety of computer networks daily. You read your emails on your smartphone via a Wi-Fi network at your house after waking up every morning while eating breakfast. When you arrive at the office, you connect to your computer and begin working with data from the company's database. If you're out for espresso, you use the Wi-Fi connection at the neighbourhood coffee shop to check the recent scores on your iPad. Some of these connections are set up uniquely. The geographic region that computer networks inhabit and the network's function within that geographic area may be used to classify them. Networks can be as little as a few devices in a single room to as large as millions of units distributed across the world.

Computers have altered human life. Technology and Smart gadgets have made our lives easier. The use of computers has improved because of the Internet. A network is made up of many computers that are linked together. Data may be easily shared thanks to networking. It saves time and effort. When computers with a single purpose are connected, they perform well. Various ways are used to demonstrate this link.

The following are some of the network elements, depending on their size

  • PAN stands for Personal Area Network
  • LAN stands for Local Area Network.

Personal Area Network vs. Local Area Network

The primary distinction between a personal area network and a local area network is that a personal area network links gadgets in the immediate neighbourhood. In contrast, a local area network can connect multiple devices over radio frequencies. Wires are used to link devices in a wired LAN network. The local area network is a system that links computers. Bluetooth, Infrared, and other personal area networks are examples. A personal area network (PAN) is a computer network that connects two or more computers. A person's gadgets are linked in this scenario. It assists him in retrieving information from any of his gadgets. This networking creates a private working environment. A PAN is a network that connects computers, cellphones, assistants like Siri, and tablets. PAN devices may connect to the Internet using a single device as a gateway

A local area network is built in homes, hospitals, and educational institutions. A LAN is something like Wi-Fi. A specific institution's Wi-Fi network links all of the devices linked to it. A laboratory created this technique around 1970. The octopus network was the name given to it at first. Then, in 1974, Cambridge University launched the Cambridge Ring, a local area network. In 1979, the European Parliament election used LAN networking to establish an electronic voting system.

There are two types of LANs: wired and wireless. Devices in a wired LAN are attached with wired connections and interconnected to an ethernet network switch. Radiofrequency waves, which are electromagnetic radiation, are used to connect multiple devices in a wireless LAN. WLAN is divided into several bands, such as 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz. WLAN has been defined as the IEEE 802.11 family of protocols, including 11a, 11b, 11g, 11n, 11ac, and 11ad.

As previously said, PAN stands for Personal Area Network. It's a network that links devices over a short distance, usually between 10 and 100 meters. While in contact, a device in one PAN network can build a connection with a device in another PAN network.

Bluetooth, Zigbee, Zwave, Infrared, and other short-range wireless technologies are all included in PAN. It was primarily conceived and developed for monitoring and control systems with low data rates. However, PAN wireless technologies have grown highly popular in IoT (Internet of Things) networks.

Difference Between Personal Area Network (PAN) And Local Area Network (LAN) In Tabular Form

Parameter Of Comparison Personal Area Network Local Area Network
Explanation It's a network covering a tiny area, usually a single room. It allows computer devices to connect with one other and share data and information. A network links computers across a short distance, such as within a building or a single computer lab with several machines.
Network Coverage In a wireless PAN network, distances range from 10 to 100 meters (i.e. Zigbee, Bluetooth) In the case of wireless LAN, distances can range from 10m to 100m and even more.


Data Speed In Zigbee, the speed is 250 kbps. In the case of Bluetooth, the speed ranges from Kbps to 24 Mbps. WLAN supports 54Mbps (as per 802.11a) and above 100Mbps (802.11n/11ac/11ad) data rates, while LAN supports 10, 100, and 1000 Mbps.
Short Form Personal Area Network is also called PAN. Local Area Network is also called LAN.
Technology According to IEEE 802.11 specifications, a wireless LAN or WLAN is a network that transmits data wirelessly. Bluetooth, Zigbee, and Zwave are just a few examples.


Efficiency Less effective Extremely effective
No. Of Devices Lessor low devices More or high devices
Classification It can be wireless or wired. It is either client-server LAN or Peer to Peer LAN.
Examples Bluetooth Wi-Fi
Communication Easy, Fast and Time-saving. Time Consuming

What Is A Personal Area Network?

On a personal level, a personal area network is beneficial. When you link your devices, you may access data from both the Master and the connected devices. A Personal Area Network (PAN) is a network that connects computers to mobile phones and tablets. PAN connections can be made wirelessly or through cable. WPAN stands for wireless personal area network.

WPAN allows you to connect over a shorter distance. It's a low-powered device. The connection ranges from a few millimetres to many meters. The devices are connected with a cable in a wired PAN. A USB is a personal area network that is wired. Thunderbolt and IEEE-1394 are two further examples.

Wireless Personal Area Networks (WPANs) are now widely used. This technology may be found in earbuds that link wirelessly to mobile phones. Bluetooth communicates through short-range radio waves. This technology is used in Bluetooth keyboards, mice, pointing devices, earbuds, and printers. The controller device is the first to establish a connection. The enslaved people are other devices that communicate with the controller device.

A standard Bluetooth connection ranges from 10 to 100 meters of communication. To provide communication up to 1000 feet, large Bluetooth routers with antennas are utilized. Infrared light is used in the IrDA connection. This technique is used in TV remote controls. IrDA technology is used in printers, keyboards, and serial communication interfaces. PAN networks make it easier to work.

Some Examples Of Personal Area Network.

  • Wireless Keyboard
  • Wireless printers
  • Smartphones
  • Tv remotes
  • Gaming consoles
  • Wireless USB

Features Of Personal Area Network

  • Both star and mesh architecture may be found in PAN.
  • Low-data-rate, short-distance applications
  • Gadgets in one PAN network can link to another gadget in the range's other PAN network.

Drawbacks Of Personal Area Network

  • The coverage range is less
  • Data transfer is low
  • Usually interfered by radio signals.

What Is A Local Area Network?

Working costs and time were reduced because of local area networking. Data transmission was essential for the manufacture and marketing of personal computers. It was accomplished by either storing or printing. They were both costly and time-consuming. Using the LAN approach cut down on time and improved the working environment. Novell Netware was created to meet the desire for a perfect LAN. Twisted pairs were protected using coaxial cables, while optical fibre cables were the other options for unshielded twisted pairs. Wireless LAN connections are simple to set up. Wireless connections are used in both homes and workplaces. They are easier to maintain. Wi-Fi is built into current devices such as cell phones and PCs. It has become commonplace in today's world.

A hotspot is a type of LAN connection as well. The techniques for creating a LAN connection include cabling and switching. A LAN connection is formed by switches linked to modems and routers. LANs that are linked to other LANs. The Metropolitan Area Network (MAN) and Wide Area Network (WAN) are two terms for this connectivity. LAN is used in banks, hospitals, offices, and other places.

Client-server LANs and peer-to-peer LANs are the two primary forms of LANs.

  • A client/server LAN comprises numerous devices (clients) that are all linked to a single server. File management, application access, device access, and network traffic are all managed by the server. Any connected device that runs or accesses programmes or the Internet qualifies as a client. Clients connect to the server using either wired or wireless connections.
  • They're usually smaller because a peer-to-peer LAN lacks a central server and can't manage huge workloads like a client/server LAN. Each device contributes equally to the network's operation on a peer-to-peer LAN. The devices exchange resources and data via wired or wireless connections to a switch or router. The majority of home networks are peer-to-peer networks.

Features of a LAN And A WLAN:

  • It is intended for optimal data rate transmission from Mbps to Gbps and is generally limited to a single building or across buildings.
  •  Recent advancements in WLAN technology have paved the way for it to be used to offload data from overburdened cellular networks.
  • Radiofrequency waves are used to link devices in a LAN.

Drawbacks Of A Local Area Networks:

  • Set up of the LAN is expensive.
  • Involvement of security risk if servers are not set up correctly.
  • Due to the enormous number of accounts, issues such as inadequate scalability may occur.

Examples Of LAN:

  • Blu-Ray players
  • Smart Tv
  • IP webcams

Differences Between Personal Area Network And Local Area Network in Points

  • A personal area network can only communicate over a limited distance. It has a radius of 100 m in ideal circumstances. The local area network has a radius of up to 10 kilometres.
  • Connecting personal devices to create a personal workspace is what a personal area network is all about. A LAN links most of the computers in an organization.
  • Bluetooth, Zwave, Zigbee, and Infrared are all examples of PAN. In addition, Wi-Fi and corporate networks are included in the LAN category.
  • Therefore, a personal area network is designed for individual users and is less effective. On the other hand, LAN is more efficient and has more capacity. In comparison to PAN, LAN is also quicker.
  • Only a restricted number of devices may be linked in a PAN connection. A LAN is a network that connects a large number of devices.
  • The networking cost of PAN is negligible, and LAN is inexpensive.
  • The cost of LAN is EXPENSIVE, whereas, in the case of PAN, it is economical.
  • Radio SIgnals usually interrupt the process in PAN, while LAN uses radio signals to link devices.


As already stated, Local Area Network is abbreviated as LAN. It is essentially a communication network that allows devices such as PCs, laptops, smartphones, tablets, and other similar devices to share data. There are two types of LANs: wired and wireless. As recently mentioned, PAN stands for Personal Area Network. It's a network that links devices over a short distance, usually between 10 and 100 meters. When in range, a device in one PAN network can establish a connection with a device in another PAN network. Personal area networks and local area networks are incredibly beneficial to modern society. A personal area network allows data to be shared in a shorter amount of time. The implementation of PAN technology in gadgets benefits a large number of families. The tendency has shifted thanks to Bluetooth earphones. They are lightweight and easy to transport. Personal assistants use PAN networks.

Establishing a LAN connection between PCs and printers facilitates the printing process. Wires are used in these sorts of connections. In hospitals, LAN is quite helpful. A patient's information is input into a gadget at one end of the facility. The information is available to the doctor on either side of the phone line. Students' information can be obtained from any computer on campus.


  • https://www.cloudflare.com/en-in/learning/network-layer/what-is-a-personal-area-network/
  • https://www.rfwireless-world.com/Terminology/LAN-vs-PAN.html

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