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Survey: Tech experts on what 2025 will look like

AP Photo/Tony Avelar
More of these, for one thing.
  • Mike Murphy
By Mike Murphy

Technology editor

Published Last updated This article is more than 2 years old.

In ten years time, you may well be answering a call on your implanted iPhone 43S about your blockchain tax audit as you are driven along in a self-driving car en route to the robot-run pharmacy.

At least, that’s what a group of over 800 IT executives and scientists surveyed by the World Economic Forum believe. A recent report, entitled Technological Tipping Points and Societal Impact, asked industry leaders what technological advancements they believed we would have by 2025.

Nearly everyone surveyed was bullish on the life-changing prospects of the Internet of Things. About 91% of respondents said they thought at least 10% of people will be wearing web-connected clothes in 2025—which Google is currently working on—and 89% believed we’ll have 1 trillion IoT sensors deployed across the world.

3D printing—a technology that still hasn’t revolutionized any industry—will apparently upend multiple industries in the near future. Over 84% of respondents believe the first 3D-printed car will roll off the printing bed in 2025, and over three-quarters of respondents believe a 3D-printed liver will be inside someone around the same time, which given the current state of medical 3D printing, may not be too hard to believe. But consumer goods—things for your and my daily life—is still likely to be untouched by 3D printing—about 81% of respondents believed that only 5% of consumer products will be 3D-printed in the next decade.

Here’s the full list of the tipping points the group of experts believe we’ll reach in the next ten years:

Tipping points in 2025Percentage
10% of people wearing clothes connected to the internet91.2%
90% of people having unlimited and free (advertising-supported) storage91
1 trillion sensors connected to the internet89.2
The first robotic pharmacist in the US86.5
10% of reading glasses connected to the internet85.5
80% of people with a digital presence on the internet84.4
The first 3D-printed car in production84.1
The first government to replace its census with big-data sources82.9
The first implantable mobile phone available commercially81.7
5% of consumer products printed in 3D81.1
90% of the population using smartphones80.7
90% of the population with regular access to the internet78.8
Driverless cars equalling 10% of all cars on US roads78.2
The first transplant of a 3D-printed liver76.4
30% of corporate audits performed by AI75.4
Tax collected for the first time by a government via a blockchain73.1
Over 50% of internet traffic to homes for appliances and devices69.9
Globally more trips/journeys via car sharing than in private cars67.2
The first city with more than 50,000 people and no traffic lights63.7
10% of global gross domestic product stored on blockchain technology57.9
The first AI machine on a corporate board of directors45.2

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