Artificial intelligence could take over 90% of household chores like changing the sheets, while smart fridges could learn what you eat and restock the fridge, study finds
There really is no place like home – as long as it’s automated – with experts saying most household chores will be done by AI, robots and drones by 2040.
A new report predicts that 90% of common household chores – including dusting, laundry and cleaning dishes – will be taken out of human hands within the next two decades.
Some tasks will become the work of robots, like changing the sheets or smart drones that can water the plants.
The study, authored by leading futurists and scholars including Professor Mischa Dohler of King’s College and futurist Dr Ian Pearson, demonstrates the time and cost benefits of automation.
Known as the “Life More Automated Report”, the document published by comparethemarket.com, details how some jobs are already partially automated thanks to inventions such as timed washing machines and dishwashers.
And research suggests that when these jobs finally become completely hands-free, people will save nearly two hours a day – more than 15 hours a week, or the equivalent of more than 33 days a year.
Kristin Sonfield, automation expert at comparethemarket.com, said, “Automation has changed our lives for the better in so many ways, and soon some household chores will be totally obsolete.
“The list of daily tasks can seem endless and little things like switching energy providers or looking for car insurance can often be the worst.
“Our automated services can help people automate life administration to save time and money, while our Simples Lab gives people tips on automation to simplify everyday life.”
Among the innovations that will arrive in stores around the world in the next 10 to 20 years are household robots.
They will be sophisticated enough to fold laundry and move furniture in seconds as they are about 15 times stronger than the average human being.
Multi-function drones will be commonplace in the 2030s, almost the size of a bug and priced at around £1 each.
Some will walk, some will fly, and some will be used for dusting, picking up dirt spots and cleaning surfaces, with variations also capable of watering plants and monitoring security around the home.
Others will shine an infrared beam on the occupant of a room to warm them as they move around the house.
AI butlers will then be the norm – hugely advanced versions of Siri or Alexa that take over all the administrators of routine life like paying bills, managing subscriptions, doing your shopping.
Inverted microwaves will cool things down in seconds rather than heating food and drinks quickly.
While self-plumping pillows will automate the process of plumping your pillow to ensure you get a good night’s sleep.
The laundry balls will be tennis ball-sized ultrasonic panel devices that use ultrasound to clean, and when placed inside a pile or bucket of clothes, they will clean clothes without the need for a bulky washing machine.
Super smart fridges will learn what you eat and reorganize when supplies are low and even recommend recipes based on the contents and expiration dates of fridge contents.
Virtual chefs will make cookbooks and video tutorials a thing of the past 20 years from now, as they will appear as holograms on the countertop to help us cook every step of the way.
The report comes after research of 1,000 UK homeowners or tenants found automation couldn’t come soon enough when it came to cleaning toilets, which was named the worst chore (34%).
Next come ironing (27%), changing sheets (24%), dusting and cleaning surfaces (23%) and dishes (20%).
Britons were also asked which inventions they would most like to see in their future homes, with 26% picking ‘domestic robots’.
Another quarter would like to see drones patrolling their home cleaning up stains, and a tenth are intrigued by ‘washing balls’, which ultrasonically clean laundry.
Academic Mischa Dohler, who worked on the report, said: “Automation is already so common in today’s households – from washing machines to dishwashers – that we don’t even really consider it. like automation.
“But the Life More Automated report examines how automation is the key to an easy home life because it gradually helps us do fewer tasks we find more tedious, from sorting bills to washing dishes.”
THE TOP 10 WORST HOUSEHOLD chores:
1. Clean the toilets (34%)
2. Ironing (27%)
3. Change the sheets (24%)
4. Dust and clean surfaces (23%)
5. Do the dishes (20%)
6. Vacuuming (15%)
7. Window cleaning (15%)
8. Take out the trash (13%)
9. Pay bills (13%)
10. Clean the fridge (13%)