A survey conducted by technology consultancy Expleo has found British consumers care more about renewable energy and technology that can remove plastics from the oceans, than voice recognition software.

Expleo surveyed 2000 UK adults and found people prefer technology that “solves real-world problems” over gadgets or novelty technology, such as home robotics, virtual reality or home entertainment.

Smart meters were praised by over 80% of the market research participants for adding value to their lives, due to their long-term potential to reduce energy use and carbon dioxide emissions through better energy management.

More than a third (43%) of consumers want future innovations to prioritise combatting climate change, over “non-essential” technology.

Around 41% surveyed said they want to see more innovation in the renewable energy sector over the next decade.

Just 11% of respondents would like to see increased investment in home robotics in the next decade, while only 15% want to be able to tour space over the next decade​.

Expleo UK quality managing director Stephen Magennis said: “The results of our research suggest that consumers are keen to see technology being used to improve society as a whole and not just bring comfort in our life.

“This topic is not new, but I think that the coronavirus pandemic has opened many people’s eyes to the transformative role technology can play in solving real-world problems, whether that’s streamlining the transition to remote working or accelerating innovation in the medical sector.”​

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