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How will life be different in 2035?

7th July 2021

How will life be different in 2035?  

New report predicts that a fairer, more sustainable future is on the horizon

  • New report says seismic shift in energy, mobility, healthcare and AI will happen over next two decades
  • Generation Alpha predicted to live in 3D printed, low carbon apartments
  • Families could eat meals designed by AI, with robots to do their domestic chores
  • Individual households could be supported to generate, store and sell their own energy
  • AI-powered botanic measurement systems could help us grow exotic fruits and vegetables which aren’t native to the UK
  • A smart meter installed in each home now will help make this exciting future possible

Wednesday 7th July 2021: A new report published today predicts that many of the most seismic shifts in the energy, mobility, healthcare and AI industries, including key steps towards tackling fuel poverty, could arrive over the next two decades with advances in data, decarbonisation and decentralisation.

The Future Smart Energy Consumer, written by Foresight Factory and commissioned by Smart Energy GB, is an investigation into how smart meters are laying the groundwork for many future innovations. It explores how many smart, innovative products and services – enabled by a modern, efficient energy system underpinned by smart meters – could dramatically change how consumers in live their lives in just 15 years’ time.

By 2035, the report predicts that some individuals may be living in fully automated smart homes. Innovations currently seen in sci-fi films are predicted to be commonplace within these households, such as domestic robots and security drones. A vast array of sensors that detect individual indicators like body temperature will be linked to an ever-learning AI, enabling the home environment to be automatically adjusted to a consistently comfortable temperature.

Getting caught out by a broken washing machine may well be a thing of the past as the smart home will understand the digital signature of different appliances, and will use energy data patterns from the householder’s smart meter to predict when the machine is going to fail.

Additionally, the report speculates that power and authority over energy could change dramatically, with renewable energy predicted to be joined with smaller, more local energy grids to provide cheap and efficient power. Individual households and communities may also potentially be supported to generate, store and sell their own energy. These brand-new opportunities, made possible by smart meter data and smart-enabled products and services, will help people to live more sustainably, while collectively addressing the climate emergency.

Vulnerable and low-income consumers in this smart-enabled future are predicted to have a range of tools and services at their disposal to take advantage of new opportunities in the face of continued challenges: rent discounts for responsible management of their energy and water use, saving money or generating income through peer-to-peer energy selling, free or subsidised home battery storage, automated energy saving programmes, energy supplier switching and new government support schemes (such as hot weather payments) are all some of the opportunities provided to vulnerable customers and could be key steps towards eliminating fuel poverty.

The report also investigates how Generation Alpha – those who are due to reach adulthood by 2035 – may experience a very different world to the one their parents grew up in. With an increasing necessity to look at alternatives to home ownership and with climate change an ever-growing threat, this generation will pivot to new, more sustainable ways of living such as shared 3D printed, low carbon apartments. The secure use of data is also predicted to enable them to live a greener lifestyle, generating tailored incentives for environmentally-friendly behaviours and rewards for living in a sustainable way.

Older citizens are also predicted to benefit from this smarter future, through advances in wearable technology and new modes of living. Smart bracelets could measure bodily indicators of health. With clear consent, datasets could be connected with each other – from wearables, implants, and from smart tech in the home – to provide a full picture of the individual’s wellbeing. For example, changes in energy consumption patterns, identified by smart meter data, could be an indicator of a bigger health issue. This would provide an additional lens through which to assess and greatly improve wellbeing, particularly for older or vulnerable consumers.

Underpinning this whirlwind of innovation will be a modern, efficient energy system, enabled by the smart meters we are all having installed today. The current rollout of these devices to households across Great Britain is a vital part of this greener, more sustainable and, above all, resilient future.

Dan Brooke, Chief Executive, Smart Energy GB, said:

"We are on our way to a net zero future and this report gives a fascinating insight into how data, decarbonisation and decentralisation will revolutionise our day-to-day lives and our energy usage in just a few short years.

“Artificial intelligence, smart homes and appliances will be able to react to our needs and help us in our increasingly busy lives. This revolution is happening in the energy sector now and will benefit both the climate and us as consumers.

“There will be more renewable energy from wind and solar, widespread use of electric cars and less reliance on oil, gas and coal for energy generation.

“There will also be many more tools and services available to vulnerable and low income customers, to ensure that they can participate in and benefit from the new innovations and technologies, and to help them build resilience against the continued challenges they will face.

“These innovations are within tantalising reach, and every smart meter installed in Britain takes us one step closer to the modern, efficient energy system required to enable this greener, smarter future.”

-ENDS-

Notes to editors

For more information, please contact: [email protected] or 07921 458 041

About smart meters and the rollout

Smart meters are the next generation of digital gas and electricity meters, providing automatic meter readings and near-real time energy use information for households.

Smart meters and the information they provide will help Britain to achieve net zero by allowing for better management of energy demand and supply, providing people with the visibility needed to reduce their usage, and making the best and most efficient use of wind and solar power. Innovative technology and services enabled by smart metering is pivotal in allowing our country to decarbonise and have more electric vehicles.

Smart meters are available from energy suppliers at no extra cost, and the accompanying in-home display shows energy use in pounds and pence. 24.2 million smart meters have already been installed across Britain.

About Smart Energy GB

Smart Energy GB is the not-for-profit, government-backed campaign helping everyone in Britain to understand the importance of smart meters and their benefits to people and the environment. Our national campaign is reaching homes and microbusinesses across England, Scotland and Wales. For more information visit smartenergyGB.org.

About Foresight Factory

Foresight Factory is a global consumer trends agency, our mission is to help businesses ‘see beyond’ using trend and data insights. For over 20 years we have helped our clients see further by revealing different, better answers to their business challenges. We interpret shifting behaviours and signals to uncover what matters most to consumers today – and tomorrow.