Predictions for 2026 | Future timeline

Read 41 predictions for 2026, a year that will see the world transform in big and small ways; this includes disruptions throughout our culture, technology, science, health and business sectors. It’s your future, discover what you’re in for.

Quantumrun Foresight prepared this list; A futurist consulting firm that uses strategic foresight to help companies thrive from future trends. This is just one of many possible futures society may experience.

Fast forecasts for 2026

Fast Forecast
  • The European Union implements the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD) for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), with an option to defer until 2028. 1
  • The National Aeronautics and Space Administration launches a rotorcraft to study Saturn's icy moon, Titan. 1
  • Consumers spend over USD $937 billion globally for ride sharing. 1
  • 25% of online users will spend at least 1 hour per day in the Metaverse. 1
  • The National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the Italian Space Agency, the Canadian Space Agency, and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency jointly launch a Mars mission to explore the near-surface ice deposits. 1
  • 90% of online content will be artificial intelligence (AI)-generated. 1
  • The European Space Agency (ESA) launches the Plato Mission, using 26 telescopes to search for habitable planets like Earth. 1
  • Startup Aska makes the first deliveries of its four-passenger air-mobility vehicles (e.g., flying cars), pre-sold at USD $789,000 each. 1
  • The Hybrit consortium of European steelmakers builds a commercial-scale plant in Sweden, producing 1.3 million tons of fossil-free iron annually for high-quality steel production. 1
  • Volvo mass produces cars with green steel, the first automaker to do so. 1
  • The global market for cell and gene therapy has grown at a compound annual growth rate of 33.6% since 2021, reaching approximately USD $17.4 billion. 1
  • The global exchange-traded fund (ETF) industry's asset under management (AUM) doubles since 2022. 1
  • The global Agriculture Internet of Things (IoT) market size and share revenue reaches USD $18.7 billion, up from USD $11.9 billion in 2020. 1
  • The global virtual reality (VR) in healthcare market size and share revenue reach USD $40.98 billion, up from USD $2.70 billion in 2020. 1
  • The European Union's experimental, International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) is activated for the first time 1
  • China's economy will overtake the U.S. for the first time 1
  • First 3D Fast Bus, the Land Airbus, is tested on Chinese roads 1
  • Google contributes to speeding up the Internet, to make it 1000 times faster 1
  • Near-infrared goggles help surgeons view cancer cells and see tumors as small as 1mm 1
  • Cost of solar panels, per watt, equals 0.75 US dollars 1
  • World population forecasted to reach 8,215,348,000 1
  • World sales of electric vehicles reaches 10,526,667 1
  • Predicted global mobile web traffic equals 126 exabytes 1
  • Global Internet traffic grows to 452 exabytes 1

Country forecasts for 2026

Read forecasts about 2026 specific to a range of countries, including:

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