I live in a rural area here in South Central Wisconsin. Cable stops 2 miles away, DSL is a good 20 miles away. I looked into satellite, and the prices are VERY cost prohibitive.
AllTel recently launched an EVDO service. The setup was a snap, Motorola MotoRAZR V3m phone, USB cable, and about 5 min of tinkering in linux, and I was online at a very respectible 400k/100k connection, with around 90-100ms latency.
Having said this, it doesn't make it easy to do a whole network this way. I did some research, and found a solution to that as well. Kyrocera offers a router (the KR1) that has both a simple USB port on it, and a spot for an EV-DO PCMCIA card. Quite literally, it would be plug 'n go, and an AllTel tier2 rep even said it works great for them at the office.
Best of all, the plan is already decent for cell phone service (4 people are on my plan, and I pay $100/month in total, and have more minutes than I know what to do with).
I've been hobbling along at 26.4kbps for quite a long time. It's very nice to finally get out of the stoneage :)