For comparison, an actual 1997 cell phone on the right (via Niels Hoffmeyer).
Science fiction tends to imagine new technological developments along a particular track, but in reality those developments have been made cheaper and widespread. William Gibson has a good quote: “The future is already here – it is just unevenly distributed.” It’s true that we’ve lived through 50 years of development guided by consumer economy. To be fair to the science fiction authors, it was military and government that guided development before that, and that’s where they got their extrapolations from. Things might change.
Another pattern seen in science fiction is that the negative trends tend to get extrapolated and throwing the world off balance. In doing this, they scare the people and get them to change their ways, often overcompensating and driving the trends in the exact opposite direction. Escape from New York warns about crime running wild, but in reality it was the opposite, it became safer. When people think it’s bad, it’s never that bad, because they’re making things better. When people think it’s good, it’s never that good, because they’re making things worse.
Science fiction authors should know their statistical modeling.