VR doctors and drone delivered pizza: The six ways tech will change our lives in the next 20 years

Lynsey Barber
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Your robot will see you now (or in 20 years perhaps) (Source: Getty)

We're hurtling towards a world that's free of cold hard cash and we'll see virtual reality doctors in the future, but we'll still be ordering takeaway pizza - only it will be delivered by drone instead, people predict.

These are just some of the technologies of the future envisioned as the most likely to be part of our lives in two decades time, new research reveals.

We wil have moved beyond wearables and our clothes themselves will be connected to the internet, while even something as science fiction like as 3D printed organs - making organ donation obsolete - is likely to be a common occurrence in 2036 people believe.

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The research comes from London and Partners as London Technology Week kicks off in the capital on Monday and where the focus will be on how technology is no longer a standalone sector and now integrated with areas such as fashion, health and finance.

Several disruptive technologies were identified by Imperial College London’s Tech Foresight team and more than 2,000 people were asked by YouGov how likely each were to transform our lives.

More than half of the public also believe driverless cars are a realistic bet down the road.

Most likely to happen

1. Physical cash will be replaced by digital cashless technology

2. Appointments with doctors will happen via virtual reality

3. Internet connected clothes will be a regular thing

4. 3D printing will be used for creating human organs

5. Driverless cars will overtake the number of normal cars on the road

6. Drone pizza deliveries will become standard

“London Technology Week shines a light on this hugely important sector of the economy and demonstrates how our city is open to trade, ideas and people from across the globe," said Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan.

"Tech-savvy Londoners welcome new digital advances that are going to revolutionise the way that we live and it is crucial that we harness those ideas to help the capital work even better as a city."

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The capital will host more than 300 events including a fashion technology showcase and Formula 1 car maker McLaren will show off its technology.

Further away is commercial space flight or artificially intelligent robots sitting on company boards, with less than half of people believing these will happen in the next 20 years.

Less likely to happen

1. The first cloned human will be born

2. Commercial space flight will be at every major airport

3. Humans will have connected devices embedded in them

4. The first AI on the board of a company

5. Having avatar girlfriends and boyfriends will be common

6. Robots will outnumber human beings

"The breadth, depth and creativity of our expansive talent pool has helped London to become a world leader in areas such as fintech, e-commerce and cyber security, just to name a few," said Eileen Burbidge, partner at Passion Capital, chair of Tech City UK and fintech special envoy to the Treasury.

"We are already seeing technology disrupting traditional industries, but in years to come we will no longer be talking about the digital tech sector in isolation. Technology and digital will be integrated into every part of the economy.”  

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