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A body area network (BAN) is a network that includes a collection of wearable devices. It is a specific type of wireless network with a very particular use and scope.
To many, the term body area network may seem similar to other terms like local area network (LAN) or wide area network (WAN), which represent different types of network scopes. A LAN typically involves hardware within one home or building, whereas a larger network template uses other types of wireless connections for a broader service area.
By contrast, a BAN covers the human body with a set of resident sensors or devices. For example, manufacturers may create BAN systems to monitor a person's vital signs, activities or fitness information, for medical purposes.
Other types of body area networks involve the use of various wearable devices for communications, or other kinds of human movement or behavior research. Body area networks have been developed for cardiac monitoring and other similar uses.