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Bernard Marr

Bernard Marr is a world-renowned futurist, influencer and thought leader in the fields of business and technology, with a passion for using technology for the good of humanity. He is a best-selling author of over 20 books, writes a regular column for Forbes and advises and coaches many of the world’s best-known organisations. He has a combined following of 4 million people across his social media channels and newsletters and was ranked by LinkedIn as one of the top 5 business influencers in the world.

Bernard’s latest books are ‘Future Skills’, ‘The Future Internet’, ‘Business Trends in Practice’ and ‘Generative AI in Practice’.

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Bernard Marr ist ein weltbekannter Futurist, Influencer und Vordenker in den Bereichen Wirtschaft und Technologie mit einer Leidenschaft für den Einsatz von Technologie zum Wohle der Menschheit. Er ist Bestsellerautor von 20 Büchern, schreibt eine regelmäßige Kolumne für Forbes und berät und coacht viele der weltweit bekanntesten Organisationen. Er hat über 2 Millionen Social-Media-Follower, 1 Million Newsletter-Abonnenten und wurde von LinkedIn als einer der Top-5-Business-Influencer der Welt und von Xing als Top Mind 2021 ausgezeichnet.

Bernards neueste Bücher sind ‘Künstliche Intelligenz im Unternehmen: Innovative Anwendungen in 50 Erfolgreichen Unternehmen’

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The Biggest Consumer Technology Trends In The Next 10 Years

11 March 2024

Sometimes, it’s nice to take a break from peeking at what’s just around the corner to try and gaze a bit further ahead!

From the vantage point of 2035, halfway through the next decade, I expect 2023 and 2024 will be remembered as watershed moments in the history of artificial intelligence.

But what will the world look like then? Today, I’m specifically looking at consumer technology – a vast field that covers the entertainment devices in our homes, the appliances in our kitchens and the cars we drive. Technology that every man and woman of 2035 will buy to make their lives easier, more exciting or more fun.

Here are what will be the most exciting ideas, the hottest topics of debate and the source of the most breathless hype (and possibly hot air) in the far-away world of 2035.

The Biggest Consumer Technology Trends In The Next 10 Years | Bernard Marr

Forget Smartphones, Meet the Sentient Phone

Even in 2024, smartphones are pretty inaccurately named. Making phone calls is not their main use anymore. Instead, the smartphone is a hub for streaming information and interacting with technology and devices around us. Consider all of the things your iPhone or Android can do now compared to what they could do when they first appeared close to two decades ago. Then, think about how they might continue to evolve as AI and other technologies continue to transform the world.

Smartphones are such a big part of our lives that most of us can’t imagine life without them. But will they still exist as we know and love them today in 10 years? Technologies like brain-computer interfaces (see below) and virtual/augmented reality displays have the potential to make screens obsolete, replacing them with graphical overlays, delivered through headsets or by sending information straight into our brains. Another potential evolutionary pathway is for them to become primarily AI assistants, capable of helping us to organize our lives and access data as and when we need it, far beyond the capabilities of today’s handsets.

Mind Control

By 2035, advances in brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) may have fundamentally altered our relationship with much of the technology in our homes and our lives outside of work. It's possible that by then, we will be getting used to interacting with and controlling the devices around us, not with screens or even voice commands, but by our thoughts alone.

Not only would this mean no more losing the remote control, but our everyday machines and devices will be able to read us, instantly adapting the way they operate in order to suit our mood or our current wants and needs. So the coffee machine will chuck in an extra shot of espresso if we’re feeling sleepy but still have stuff to do, or dim the lights and put on relaxing music when it’s getting close to bedtime.

Big warning flags are probably popping up for you right now. How do we know that our thoughts are still private? And what’s being done with all this information from our brains that the big tech service providers of 2035 are collecting? Well, seeing as their continuously increasing power means they can get away with being even less transparent and accountable than they are today, nobody really knows!

Rights For Robots?

By 2035, we may have robots helping us in our homes in any number of forms. Personal robotic assistants could be a fact of everyday life, particularly for the elderly and infirm or anyone who needs help due to illnesses or disabilities. They could be helping us with manual chores or providing security. Meanwhile, cars and vehicles have also become highly autonomous products that are essentially robots.

But have we got to the point at which we have to start considering the potential ethical implications of basically enslaving them?

Of course not, you may instinctively think. We’ve never been worried that we might be exploiting our cars, computers or any of the other machines we’ve used for decades to make our lives easier. But let’s consider that in 10 years time, it could be increasingly difficult to say for certain that our mechanized assistants are not in some way self-aware. If they are, this might mean they could understand that they’re essentially being exploited.

Yes, ok, we’ve all seen The Matrix and know that in the world of science fiction, this could have unpleasant consequences. But we don't have to go that far out to find ourselves getting into a potentially sticky ethical situation. By 2035, society may have to debate whether any suggestion that an AI has become sophisticated enough to consider itself exploited creates an ethical obligation for us to end that exploitation. Whether it happens 10 or 50 years from now, this is a problem we will probably have to face someday.

The Real World Is For Losers

Video games and virtual reality worlds have become so immersive, experiential and amazing that some people just don’t get enough of a kick out of mundane reality anymore. We’re perhaps not yet talking Holodecks as seen in Star Trek – where any fantasy scenario can become a simulated living, breathing reality. But thanks to the injection of AI into games and virtual worlds, we may not be that far off.

With graphics that it’s hard for us to say with certainty aren’t real and AI-generated living, breathing worlds populated by characters that we can interact with as if they’re human, video games of 2035 make the cutting-edge games we have today look as sophisticated as Space Invaders. We will probably even be able to touch and feel these virtual worlds thanks to advances in haptic feedback and sensory stimulation. We may have reached the point where this is indistinguishable from reality – or that may still be a few years away. But we’re getting close.

Sounds great, but there's one catch – these games and virtual experiences are so exciting and so stimulating that for some people, the real world just isn’t good enough anymore. However, as they’re now quite capable of earning money, educating themselves and maintaining personal relationships within virtual worlds, many don’t even see this as a problem.

Business Trends In Practice | Bernard Marr
Business Trends In Practice | Bernard Marr

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Bernard Marr is a world-renowned futurist, influencer and thought leader in the fields of business and technology, with a passion for using technology for the good of humanity.

He is a best-selling author of over 20 books, writes a regular column for Forbes and advises and coaches many of the world’s best-known organisations.

He has a combined following of 4 million people across his social media channels and newsletters and was ranked by LinkedIn as one of the top 5 business influencers in the world.

Bernard’s latest book is ‘Generative AI in Practice’.

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