Three quarters see artificial intelligence as an opportunity
- One in two people already use AI in their everyday lives
- More than half expect AI to change society within five years - or already do so
The chatbot answers every question ready to print, or the app paints a picture according to instructions and in the desired style - in recent weeks and months, a broad public has tried out what artificial intelligence can now do. Around three quarters of German citizens (73 percent) now believe that AI is an opportunity. 26 percent see AI exclusively as an opportunity, 47 percent rather as an opportunity. In contrast, 14 percent consider AI to be more of a threat, and one-tenth (10 percent) even see it exclusively as a threat. These are the findings of a survey of 1,007 people aged 16 and over in Germany commissioned by the digital association Bitkom. "We are currently experiencing a historic moment in artificial intelligence: for the first time, computers are really speaking our language and we no longer have to learn the language of computers in order to understand or instruct them," says Bitkom President Achim Berg. "We can already say that artificial intelligence will be the technology of 2023. In the coming years, AI will change the world more than such a major innovation as the smartphone did."
Expectations for AI are high among the population, with 8 in 10 (79 percent) convinced that AI will strengthen the competitiveness of the German economy - up from 66 percent three years ago. Two-thirds (66 percent) now want AI to be used when the technology brings them concrete benefits, for example in medicine or transport. And around half (51 percent) say they already regularly use AI-based products and services in their everyday lives, such as voice assistants. Around a third (35 percent) fear that humans will be disempowered by machines; in 2020, 46 percent of people shared this concern. Only 26 percent believe that AI will not fulfill the great expectations (2020: 28 percent). At the same time, however, a broad majority (88 percent, 2020: 85 percent) would like to see AI software tested particularly thoroughly in Germany and only allowed to be used in devices once it has been approved. At the same time, a third (34 percent, 2020: 44 percent) demand that AI should be banned in certain areas of application. "We need guidelines for the use of AI. These guidelines must be designed to maximize the benefits of AI and minimize risks," Berg said.
Most people think artificial intelligence will noticeably change our society in the coming years - or is already doing so. Twenty-eight percent say the changes are already noticeable, 30 percent expect it in the next five years, 13 percent in the next 10 and 11 percent in the next 20. Only 8 percent expect it in more than 20 years at the earliest, and just 4 percent believe that AI will never noticeably change society.