The next 15 years will see relaxing driverless commutes, robotic kerbside deliveries and roaming office pods that take the workplace to the worker, according to a new study by global design firm Ideo. We outline the key concepts below:
- Convenient Commuting: Ideo envisions a future where autonomous vehicles make commuting safer and faster, while freeing up travellers' attention for work and entertainment during the journey. Road congestion will be rare – the technology encourages shared commutes and will lead to less car ownership, with each shared autonomous vehicle taking an estimated 11 conventional ones off the road.
- Hyper-Efficient Deliveries: A clean-energy fleet of robotic delivery vehicles will enable kerbside deliveries 24 hours a day. The vehicles will use the most efficient times and routes for travel, modifying in real time in response to traffic data. Ideo predicts that the technology will have a knock-on effect across the supply chain – extending made-to-order production and minimising the need to store goods in warehouses.
- Inverse Commute: Work will eventually travel to individuals, rather than the other way round. Self-driving workstations, conceived as small glass cabins that can link together to form larger spaces, would drive to sites of high demand in response to bookings by individuals and businesses. So-called 'Work On Wheels' (WOW) locations would become prime business opportunities for owners of underused real estate, and for mobile services like food trucks, healthcare and launderettes that could gather to meet workers' needs.
Discover more innovative visions of mobility in our RCA Vehicle Design report, which highlights some of the best transport concepts by the next generation of car designers from London's Royal College of Art.