Selfies could be used as part of online banking and doctors’ appointments in the future, new research claims.
According to a report from Sony Mobile and futurology firm Futurizon, the rise of the self-portrait photos will continue and will be applied to technology in practical terms.
These will include as a way of confirming your identity to log into various accounts or as a form of payment for some services.
On average in the UK we now each take 24 selfies a month, the research claims, with the average user taking five selfies before they are happy with the end result.
The report found that within five years, technology could be applied to selfies so that they could be used as part of dating – with facial analysis of factors including pupil dilation helping to give an indication of whether your date is attracted to you.
The research also showed that 20% of us would rather see our GP via a selfie or video call in the first instance.
Futurologist Dr Ian Pearson, who helped create the study, said: “Through this report, it has been fascinating to chart the evolution of selfies and smartphone photography with the team at Sony Mobile.
“But even more encouraging has been the response from consumers, who have shown they are open to the range of future uses for selfies and video calls.
“The results clearly show that selfies are well on their way to transitioning from frivolous fad to technological phenomenon, and provide food for thought to a number of industries.
“The potential is huge, and it will be exciting to watch this unfold over the coming years.”
The research found the most likely future usages for selfies also included as a visual password for securely logging into online banking, as well as in retail by taking a full body photo and being shown relevant sizes and styles.
Sony Mobile’s Michio Maruhashi said the report could also help shape future product development.
“The project has given us a real sense of how selfies have evolved, and why they could be set to transform so many different sectors,” he said.
“At Sony Mobile we face the dual task of designing smartphones that make consumers’ lives easier today, while keeping an eye on what the future holds and being part of driving innovation and change.
“We have always seen photography as being a key function at the heart of the smartphone and have already advanced front camera technology in our Xperia XZ for superior quality photos.
“So it’s incredibly exciting to find that consumers are ready to embrace selfies for such a wide range of future uses that enhance our everyday lives.”