CNN has a story on Wi-Max, the upcoming standard for high-speed wireless Internet access from anywhere on the Sprint network. It's a metropolitan area network (MAN) although that term isn't really used as much anymore. While I may not see it here for another two years, this 4G wireless service should eventually supplant the EVDO service Sprint has now. For all those iPhone users waiting in line to get their silly first generation device which can only get Cingular's EDGE speeds (around 50Kbps), the megabit speeds of Wi-Max would make it look like a very fancy horse-and-buggy, next to a 2007 Bentley Flying Spur. The device may be usable but when it comes to downloading anything for a browser or worse a movie, be prepared to be tragically disappointed. Even my current EVDO service beats that by a magnitude.
Truth is that Wi-Max will not beat 802.11g in terms of raw speed (54Mbps) for a local area network, but keep in mind that most Wi-Fi hotspots are limited by their outgoing bandwidth, usually a DSL or Cable modem that really limits it to perhaps 2Mbps at best, before it even reaches their ISP. Worse yet, this bandwidth is shared with others from the hotspot point to the net, so in most cases, you're lucky if you can get a few hundred Kbps. With Wi-Max the uplink/downlink goes straight to the provider's antenna, and from there (presumably) high-speed links in the hundreds of megabits. It's a shorter hop and a much larger outgoing pipeline. This is assuming that the provider like Sprint does the right thing and has those outgoing net links at high-speeds, not a 10Mbps line.
Per that CNN article, Craig McCaw is right: "...doing for the Internet what cell phones did for voice 20 years ago."
To put it in perspective, texting from phones may go the way of the sailboat--still around for some purposes, but generally replaced by other forms of travel. It may become replaced by live video clips directly between users: faster, and easier (although maybe not from under the table in the meeting room). Push-to-talk can become push-to-video. Projects like SecondLife and Google Earth (in 3D) could be incorporated into your phones with GPS to actually show you the path you need to take (like the batmobile in Batman Begins) or the location of your peers in buildings (like in just about any modern spy movie today). For the truly self-immersed, you could stream continously from your headset mounted video camera to your vlog site.