This diagram illustrates a hypothetical wide area network (WAN) configuration that joins LANs in three metropolitan locations. Wide area networks cover a large geographic area like a city, a country or multiple countries. WANs normally connect multiple LANs and other smaller-scale area networks. WANs are built by large telecommunication companies and other corporations using highly-specialized equipment not found in consumer stores. The Internet is an example of a WAN that joins local and metropolitan area networks across most of the world.