Starbucks U.S. operations have launched its Gold card, a paid membership with Wi-Fi included: The Starbucks Gold card was in testing for some time in Seattle--the outlet near my office has had a Gold logo in the window for months, I believe--but it's now unleashed for general consumption. The card costs $25 per year, and includes two hours of continuous Wi-Fi access each day; the firm's stored value card offers Wi-Fi for 30 days following a purchase or adding value.
Gold has a bunch of frequent sipper benefits: a free drink when you purchase the membership, followed by 10 percent discounts on most stuff you buy (drinks, food, merchandise, hard goods), a free beverage on your birthday each year, and other discounts and deals that will be announced during the year.
I suppose the logic is that for someone who spends over $175 per year at Starbucks would likely make up the difference (10% of $175 plus a couple free drinks should top $25). It's possible I spend that much, even though I only have casual interest in their shops, because of frequenting them in strange towns, enjoying their sandwiches (not their roasts), and airport purchases.
Update: Contrary to the plain text with no footnote on the Gold sign-up site--"Free Wi-Fi access for up to 2 hours each day in participating Starbucks stores"--Starbucks contacted me to clarify that Gold card holders must also make a purchase or add value every 30 days to have continuous access to the Wi-Fi offer.