Tomorrow's world?

Underwater motorways, holidays in space and self-cleaning homes. They’ll all be part of our world in 50 years, according to a new report on the future of technology.

The report also predicts that by 2069 there’ll be mass production of 3D-printed organs and body implants that monitor our health. Entitled Samsung KX50: The Future in Focus it was commissioned by Samsung to mark the opening of Samsung KX, the technology firms new “experience space” and retail store in London’s King’s Cross. It was compiled by six of Britain’s leading academics and futurists.

Concept image of an underwater highway.

Concept image of an underwater highway.

It suggests transport will be revolutionised with underwater tube transport systems between the United Kingdom, mainland Europe and other regions, where high-speed pods deliver passengers between some countries in less than an hour.

Flying taxis and buses will also be used in urban areas to cut congestion, while more long-distance travel will involve reusable rockets flying in the upper atmosphere and at high-speed, cutting travel time between London and New York, for example,  to around 30 minutes, the report says. 

Concept image of flying bus.

Concept image of flying bus.

In health, virtual companions and carers will be commonplace, tracking a person’s health status throughout their life and able to translate symptoms and conditions into any language.

The large-scale 3D printing of vital organs will offer instant replacements to those who need them and insects will have become a key protein source, the report claims, with kitchens of the future equipped with counter-top growing pods and tools to harvest the insects produced.

And aerial sport matches, much like the Quiddich game from Harry Potter, will be played in stadiums around the world.

Concept image of underground skyscraper.

Concept image of underground skyscraper.

Jacqueline de Rojas, president of techUK and co-author of the report, said: “The next 50 years will bring the largest technological changes and innovations we have ever seen in our work and leisure.

“The Digital Revolution, just as the Industrial Revolution did 250 years ago, is challenging all our assumptions about how we shall lead our future lives. 

“The new Samsung KX destination is a celebration of impressive changes enabled by technology over the last 50 years – looking ahead, we can expect to be connected to everything, and everything we do will be assisted by digital technology."

The ten top predictions for the future are:

  • Underwater highways - A subsonic tube transport system will be created as a sealed tube system that is travelled using pods, enabling connections between the UK and mainland Europe as far as Scandinavia in under an hour

  • Underground skyscrapers - So-called earthscrapers, inverted skyscrapers, which burrow downwards for many storeys into the ground, enabling the withstanding of earthquakes

  • Self-Cleaning homes - At the press of the button, homes will 'self clean' when you leave the house or while you are sleeping

  • Space hotels - Holidays to space, in which space hotels orbit the Moon or other planets, generating their own gravity

  • 3D printing of organs - Providing replacements for people in need or organ transplants or to improve performance, giving night-vision or super-speed

  • High street insect-burger takeaways - Insects at set to become one of our main food protein sources

  • Flying buses and taxis - We'll be stepping into the nearest available 'air taxi' as a high power drone-copter will fly us above the traffic to speed us to our destination

  • Body implants that monitor our health and translate any language - A digital companion that gets to know us and our health over our lifetime, which keeps track of our health needs

  • Quidditch-style aerial sport matches on hoverboards - We'll be cheering on our favourite sporting teams as they fly around the stadium on hoverboards, in Quidditch-style four-dimensional sport matches

  • Interactive movies, physically taking part in what we watch via VR - When it comes to watching films at home, affordable, refined haptic suits that create sensations of touch, which will fool all five of our senses, allowing us to physically feel the film or video game