April 23, 2016
Hyper-tall skyscrapers, underwater bubble cities, personal home “medi-pods” and civilian colonies on the Moon are all likely to be a reality in a hundred years’ time, according to a report commissioned by Samsung.
A new study commissioned by Samsung paints a vivid picture of our future lives; suggesting the way we live, work and play will change beyond recognition over the course of the next century. The SmartThings Future Living Report was authored by a team of leading academics – including TV presenter and space scientist, Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock, award-winning futurist architects and lecturers at the University of Westminster, Arthur Mamou-Mani and Toby Burgess, as well as pioneering urbanists Linda Aitken and Els Leclerq.
The report was released to promote SmartThings, a system which allows people to make their home smarter, meaning that at any time and from anywhere it is possible to switch on lights, turn up the thermostat or unlock the back door, all via a simple app or automatically through daily routines – something that might have seemed like science fiction as little as 10 years ago, but today is a reality.
The predictions for how we will live in the future have been brought to life via detailed animated renders, showing a futuristic London where high rise apartments dwarf the Shard, and drone transportation is ubiquitous.
Many of the predictions were influenced by environmental conditions, with growing populations leading to the development of structures better able to cope with space constraints and diminishing resources. As city space becomes ever more squeezed, we will burrow deeper and build higher with the creation of:
Super skyscrapers: carbon nanotubes and diamond nano-threads will help us create towering megastructures that dwarf today’s skyscrapers
Earth-scrapers: just as we build up, we will also dig down – huge structures will tunnel 25 storeys deep, or more
Underwater cities: using the water itself to create breathable atmospheres and generating hydrogen fuel in the process
Personal flying drones replacing cars: we will travel through “skyways” with our own personal flying drones, some big enough to carry entire homes around the world for holidays
As technology develops, Samsung predicts:
3D printing of houses and furniture: we will be able to print exact replicas of large scale structures like houses out of local, recyclable materials so that we really can have all the comforts of home while we are away
Flexible, smart walls and 3D printed Michelin starred meals: smart walls will mean you won’t need to decorate your home – room surfaces will adapt to suit your mood. When it comes to entertaining, there will be no more botched recipes or pizza deliveries – instead we will be downloading dishes from famous chefs that we will tailor to our personal needs. We will be able to 3D-print a banquet or a favourite cake in minutes
Virtual meetings: our working lives will be transformed with the use of holograms which will allow us to attend meetings virtually, without leaving the comfort of our homes
Home medi-pods: stepping into these will confirm if you really are ill, providing a digital diagnosis and supplying medicine or a remote surgeon if needed
Colonisation of space: first the Moon, then Mars, then far beyond into the galaxy
In addition to looking at how we will live in 100 years’ time, the SmartThings team surveyed 2,000 British adults to pinpoint the predictions the nation thought were the most likely to become a reality in the future. This survey shines a spotlight on the public perception of the future and suggests that building further into the sky, and colonising oceans are believed to be the biggest future trends, as space and resources become scarce. The top ten predictions for future living:
|1||Virtual work meetings – the ability to work from anywhere and attend meetings remotely via avatars/holograms||48%|
|2||Commercial flights into space||41%|
|3||Virtual interior decoration to program your surroundings/LED walls that adapt surroundings to your mood||26%|
|4||3D printed houses/furniture/food – you can instantly download and print these things at home||25%|
|5||At-home scanning capsules/pods that can diagnose health problems and administer medicines/treatments||24%|
|6||Colonising other planets as we use up resources on Earth||19%|
|7||AI becoming a normal part of daily life – taking over from humans in many industries||18%|
|8||Giant skyscrapers that house entire cities, built with new super-strong materials||18%|
|9||At-home hydroponic farms (that don’t require soil) where you can grow your own food||17%|
|10||Earth-scrapers – parts of cities becoming subterranean, due to space constraints and also to provide further shelter||16%|
Space Scientist Maggie Aderin-Pocock, who co-authored the report, commented: “Our lives today are almost unrecognisable from those a century ago. The Internet has revolutionised the way we communicate, learn and control our lives. Just 25 years ago, technology like SmartThings would have been inconceivable, yet today, developments like this let us monitor, control and secure our living spaces with the touch of a smartphone. Over the next century we will witness further seismic shifts in the way we live and interact with our surroundings – working on the SmartThings Future Living Report, with a panel of industry experts, has allowed me to explore what these could be.
“We are likely to see the emergence of towering megastructures, as well as sub-aquatic cities and transportation via advanced flying drones – some of which could be strong enough to transport entire houses on holiday.”
James Monighan, UK Managing Director of Samsung SmartThings, comments as follows: “The smart home revolution will have massively positive implications on how we live. Our homes are becoming smarter – they can now detect the presence of things like people, pets, smoke, humidity, lighting and moisture. And this is just the beginning.
“Just as the technology driving the Internet has spread to smartphones and smart homes, the smart home revolution is destined to spread to larger communities and countries. By simply turning lights and heating off when we don’t use them, we can reduce emissions. By being able to better monitor and secure our homes, we can reduce crime. By better monitoring the habits of aging relatives, we help them to achieve greater independence and a higher quality of life.”
The report has been published to coincide with the announcement that SmartThings will work with hundreds of products, from a wide range of brands – as well as working with all of Samsung’s TVs, refrigerators, washer machines, ovens, and robot vacuum cleaners.