@Version 1.0. No data problems in the US
Must be looking at Sprint, T-Mobile, or (to a lesser extent) AT&T's map. This is one instance where I must rub it in as a US'ian compared to the "bad or even worse" choice you seem to have in the UK.
Verizon doesn't have blanket coverage -- nobody does -- but it's good. I've gone on several 1000 mile road trips, with high speed data for all but maybe 5 or so miles (going south to New Orleans there was about a 30 mile stretch (in Missouri) where I dropped to 144kbps 1X data, but the other ~900 miles was high speed the entire way.)
If I'm not riding in a car? Forget about it, I will be getting at least 800kbps and have seen over 1.5mbps pretty often. And this is on an older card that is EVDO Rev 0 (2.4mbps peak) instead of Rev A, and that was known for poor RF when it was new. EVDO Rev A has only a peak speed of 3.1mbps, but Verizon says to expect typical speeds of 600kbps-1.4mbps, and I see those speeds even with my older card -- none of this "7.2mbps on paper, but 100kbps in reality" type stuff. I'm VERY VERY surprised if I end up somewhere where my card isn't fast enough to stream videos.