A personal area network, or PAN, is a computer network organized around an individual person within a single building. This could be inside a small office or residence. A typical PAN would include one or more computers, telephones, peripheral devices, video game consoles and other personal entertainment devices.
If multiple individuals use the same network within a residence, the network is sometimes referred to as a home area network, or HAN. In a very typical setup, a residence will have a single wired Internet connection connected to a modem. This modem then provides both wired and wireless connections for multiple devices. The network is typically managed from a single computer but can be accessed from any device.
This type of network provides great flexibility. For example, it allows you to:
· Send a document to the printer in the office upstairs while you are sitting on the couch with your laptop.
· Upload a photo from your cell phone to your desktop computer.
· Watch movies from an online streaming service to your TV.
If this sounds familiar to you, you likely have a PAN in your house without having called it by its name.