Gary Krakow loves EVDO: Verizon Wireless's 1xEv-DO cellular data service isn't available everywhere yet, but Krakow loves even the current level of ubiquity and speed. A number of my colleagues think that even a few hundred kilobits per second of download will be adequate for most users, rendering Wi-Fi connected to a T1 line or even faster ADSL service--like 6 Mbps down and 768 Kbps--a bit of overkill.
I tend to think these colleagues don't fully appreciate how many business travelers there are in the U.S.--40 million of them by one count, 30 million of which carry laptops--and how many of those travelers have high-bandwidth applications that they struggle to use. Customer-relation management (CRM) software, Java or ActiveX based internal applications, or even simple file exchange requires a fair amount of bandwidth to offer the "it's like I'm in the office" experience.
Even uploading a 10 MB PowerPoint presentation is torture at the 50 to 100 Kbps per speed that's the maximum that EVDO can offer right now. Downloads might break 2 Mbps at peak performance, more likely averaging a very respectable few hundred Kbps, but uploads aren't emphasized in the current generation of technology. Tell that to the folks trying to send high-resolution pictures and movies from fancy new camera phones, too!
Krakow doesn't overstate the advantages of EVDO, however. He's pretty realistic. And for general email and Web browsing, EVDO is more than adequate. Remember that the 1x in 1xEv-DO stands for 1.25 MHz of spectrum. A 3x flavor of CDMA2000 will use 3.75 MHz and be able to offer much more speed in both directions. One flavor in the lab would bring peak upload to 1 Mbps, for instance.