According to John C. Dvorak, cellular service companies are out to kill Wi-Fi, being their largest threat in the long term. The technology’s popularity, as indicated by a Pew Internet & American Life Project survey, has grown significantly over the last two years: about 34 percent of Internet users secure online access via Wi-Fi connections, as compared to only 22 percent in 2005, and 19 percent now have home wireless networks, a 9 percent jump from a year ago.
The largest concern for cellphone service carriers is the emerging trend of free municipal or citywide Wi-Fi coverage. Wireless networks can deliver speeds of 54 Mbps and can easily go up to 100 Mbps, with pre-802.11n. Cellophone connections are slower — speeds only range from 384 Kbps with EDGE to 2 Mbps on EV-DO — and costlier, with plans amounting to $50, $60, or $70 per month.