While experts and officials express concerns over the impact of robots and artificial intelligence on human beings' jobs and lifestyle, people could soon find themselves falling in love with the machines, a new study found. According to an international survey conducted by Paris-based Havas, a multinational advertising and public relations company, younger people are more open to friendships and even romantic relationships with robots.
Conducted in March and April 2017, the survey questioned over 12,000 people above the age of 18 in 32 countries - including the UK, US, Canada, Germany, France, India, Singapore and the United Ara Emirates - about their relationship with technology.
When it comes to romantic relationships with robots, just 11% of men and 7% of women surveyed said they are open to dating a bot. However, this could likely change as a quarter of millennials believe humans and robots will eventually develop deep friendships and even romantic relationships.
"This likely will not be terribly far into the future, given that companies already are selling robot sex dolls," the report reads. "The notion that people could actually fall in love with robots - not just use them for sex - speaks to a growing level of agreement that developers will be able to create androids that not only look human but actually express themselves in human-like waves."
About 41% of millennials believe that robots will eventually become so lifelike that they will be indistinguishable from humans.
"An interesting tension comes out of this: Will robots be so perfect that we will lose our ability to accept imperfections in people?" the report read. "Around a third of our respondents fear that will be the case. Why bother dealing with complicated human feelings and behaviours when a dreamy looking android will do just as I bid?"
Beyond romantic implications, the report also highlighted some other concerns and views on the impact of robots on humanity in the future.
While many people still consider artificial intelligence to be a thing of the future, just 44% of women surveyed are optimistic about the future of AI as compared to 60% of men. About 56% of millennials said AI will be good for society as compared to 52% of Gen Xers (ages 35-54) and Boomers (ages 55+).
More women (45%) believe that AI will take away millions of jobs from humans than men do. On the other hand, 35% of men surveyed said AI will create jobs that "we cannot even imagine today" as opposed to just 28% of women.
In terms of AI taking over and controlling human society, 26% of women and 21% of men believe this is a likely scenario.
More than 6 in 10 people surveyed said they always keep their phones within reach while over 27% of millennials - people aged 18-34 - admitted that they are a "slave" to their smartphone.
Around 67% of respondents said they believe modern technology is weakening human bonds.
"The concern is clear: As we become more and more plugged into our digital devices, we may be sacrificing the ties that unite us as a species," the report read.