In the urban areas up here cable speeds are WAY higher than DSL and cable is more stable based on what my friends and family tell me.
When I use the public library computers to access something larger than I can get here at the house in a short amount of time, they are running faster than any of the speeds you listed. I'm thinking they average around 8 mb/s and peak well over 10 mb/s (I recall seeing speeds using speedtest.net around 14kb/s) For comparison, DSL is running in the 2.5 mb/s area (IIRC).
One thing you ought to do is go to speedtest.net, look up the connect speeds based on your area (if that is possible - not sure what area you are looking at) and see the comparison of connect speeds and go from there.
I can get neither where I live, so it's only a choice between Hughes and Alltel/Verizon (HSPD), and since Hughes has download thresholds, it wasn't even a fair comparison.
I get my nets through a cell card, wifi router and cellular repeater antenna. :-) Highest tech, lowest speed connect in the country. We don't even get 1mb/s connect here, but it's better than dialup, trips to public resources or conglomerates cutting my speed down to dialup when I get a few geotiffs.
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