WANs are built to provide communication solutions for organizations or people who need to exchange digital information between two distant places (in one country or in two different countries). Since the distance is long, the local telecommunication company is involved; in fact, WANs are usually maintained by the country's public telecommunication companies which offer different communication services to the population.
The main purpose of a WAN is to provide reliable, fast and safe communication between two or more places (Nodes) with low delays and at low prices. WANs enable an organization to have one integral network between all its departments and offices, even if they are not all in the same building or city, providing communication between the organization and the rest of the world. In principle, this task is accomplished by connecting the organization (and all the other organizations) to the network nodes by different types of communication strategies and applications. Since WANs are usually developed by the PTT of each country, their development is influenced by each PTT's own strategies and politics.