The emergence of Covid-19 has made us rethink and re-evaluate so many aspects of everyday life that it’s now difficult to imagine many aspects of life ever being quite the same again. Most countries have only been in lockdown for three months, yet the shift in the way we shop, work, and communicate has already been seismic. Here are just a few aspects of tomorrow’s world that are being shaped today.
Communicating with friends and family
Through lockdown, our primary method of communicating with family and friends has been through online social tools. Interestingly, recent statistics prove our use of these tools has increased dramatically through the pandemic – in some cases, as much as doubling.
It’s somewhat ironic that social media, for so long lambasted as the destroyer of communication, should transpire to be the major factor that has held the world together through such dark times. In the future, we will continue to rely on these technologies to keep us close to our nearest and dearest.
There’s every possibility the way we work – not to mention where we work – will change forever as a result of the Coronavirus. Most employers are already coming to realize they don’t need expensive office suites to operate. ‘Work from home’ is appearing on more and more job adverts. Staff working on a Zero Trust network are proving daily they can work adequately well from home while achieving a better work/life balance.
The shift to online working was as swift as it was dramatic, but its success makes it unlikely we will ever go back to an old style of work again. In the future, expect more and more home-based roles to appear – with only occasional trips to the office to check-in.
Travel and tourism
The travel and tourism industry was hit harder by the virus than any other. Lockdown brought an abrupt end to travel – both nationally and internationally – as countries struggled to reduce the chances of infection among their populations. Ironically, in the years up to Covid-19, the travel industry had been enjoying its greatest-ever period of growth with cheap flights and budget accommodation widely available effecting a boom in popularity.
Air travel now isn’t expected to return to pre-Covid levels until at least 2023 – possibly longer. Until a vaccine is found, people will remain sufficiently fearful of traveling in confined spaces.
Our shopping habits were already changing long before the emergence of Covid-19, with shoppers increasingly turning away from the high street and favoring instead to shop online.
Since the start of lockdown, the shift to online retailers has been rampant and one wonders if many traditional shops will ever return. Shoppers have grown used to the convenience of point and click services and are quite accepting of next day delivery.
In a world where face-to-face meetings and physical interaction with strangers are viewed with a sense of fear and distrust, people have moved increasingly to technology to meet new people and organize dates.
The popularity of online dating was already growing, but the Coronavirus has made us adapt to using dating technologies for more than just swiping left and right. In 2020, going on a virtual video date has become a very real thing.
Until the dangers of the virus subside or become manageable, it’s unlikely these newly-adopted habits will simply disappear. Rather, we have probably crossed a dividing line where our use of – and interaction with – online services is now just a perfectly normal part of our everyday lives.