Artificial Intelligence

Advances in artificial intelligence (AI) and the decreasing cost of computing power promise to change the way people work and communicate over the next century. With the ability to perform risky human tasks and instantly detect error outputs, AI promises to transform lives and workplaces. But what do Americans say?

Adults are largely unfamiliar with the concept of artificial intelligence

How much would you say you know about each of the following?

A lot
Some
Not much
Nothing at all

Internet of things

  • 21%
  • 41%
  • 22%
  • 16%

Drones

  • 15%
  • 45%
  • 29%
  • 11%

Artificial Intelligence

  • 12%
  • 35%
  • 35%
  • 18%

Machine Learning

  • 11%
  • 27%
  • 37%
  • 26%

Autonomous Vehicles

  • 11%
  • 37%
  • 31%
  • 21%

Though plurality say they are comfortable with its usage despite unfamiliarity

Generally, are you comfortable or uncomfortable with each of the following?

Very comfortable
Somewhat comfortable
Somewhat uncomfortable
Very uncomfortable
Don't Know / No Opinion

Internet of things

  • 19%
  • 34%
  • 13%
  • 6%
  • 29%

Drones

  • 16%
  • 32%
  • 24%
  • 13%
  • 15%

Machine learning

  • 13%
  • 30%
  • 18%
  • 7%
  • 31%

Autonomous vehicles

  • 12%
  • 22%
  • 25%
  • 17%
  • 23%

Artificial intelligence

  • 12%
  • 30%
  • 23%
  • 13%
  • 23%

7 in 10 predict expanded use of AI over the next few years

Now, thinking more about artificial intelligence, how common do you think the use of artificial intelligence will be in...

Very common
Somewhat common
Not too common
Not common
Don't Know / No Opinion

The next 50 years

  • 65%
  • 10%
  • 5%
  • 4%
  • 16%

The next 20 years

  • 59%
  • 17%
  • 7%
  • 3%
  • 14%

The next 10 years

  • 47%
  • 27%
  • 8%
  • 4%
  • 14%

The next 5 years

  • 32%
  • 36%
  • 14%
  • 5%
  • 13%

Inevitable - the adjective most adults use to describe AI

And, which of the following comes closest to your view, even if none are exactly right? Artificial intelligence is...

Important

  • 12%

Not necessary

  • 9%

Dangerous

  • 14%

Inevitable

  • 29%

Scary

  • 12%

Exciting

  • 11%

Don't Know / No Opinion

  • 12%
Important
Not necessary
Dangerous
Inevitable
Scary
Exciting
Don't Know / No Opinion

Topline

  • 12%
  • 9%
  • 14%
  • 29%
  • 12%
  • 11%
  • 12%

Gender: Male

  • 14%
  • 8%
  • 16%
  • 29%
  • 11%
  • 14%
  • 8%

Gender: Female

  • 10%
  • 11%
  • 12%
  • 29%
  • 13%
  • 9%
  • 15%

Age: 18-29

  • 16%
  • 11%
  • 13%
  • 22%
  • 11%
  • 17%
  • 11%

Age: 30-44

  • 12%
  • 9%
  • 15%
  • 27%
  • 10%
  • 15%
  • 13%

Age: 45-64

  • 12%
  • 10%
  • 14%
  • 31%
  • 14%
  • 7%
  • 12%

Age: 65+

  • 9%
  • 9%
  • 15%
  • 35%
  • 12%
  • 8%
  • 11%

Democrats

  • 15%
  • 10%
  • 12%
  • 30%
  • 12%
  • 12%
  • 10%

Independents

  • 10%
  • 11%
  • 15%
  • 28%
  • 12%
  • 11%
  • 14%

Republicans

  • 13%
  • 8%
  • 16%
  • 28%
  • 12%
  • 12%
  • 11%

Strong majorities say advances in artificial intelligence will benefit key industries and sectors

How much would each one of the following fields benefit from advances in artificial intelligence?

A lot
Some
Not much
Nothing at all
Don't Know / No Opinion

Computer science

  • 42%
  • 31%
  • 8%
  • 3%
  • 16%

Manufacturing

  • 35%
  • 32%
  • 11%
  • 5%
  • 16%

Medicine

  • 35%
  • 31%
  • 11%
  • 6%
  • 16%

Military science

  • 34%
  • 33%
  • 10%
  • 5%
  • 18%

Hard science

  • 32%
  • 34%
  • 13%
  • 5%
  • 17%

Finance

  • 22%
  • 34%
  • 19%
  • 8%
  • 18%

And they are most palatable to its potential perform dangerous tasks and improve security measures

If you knew the following, would that make you more likely to support or more likely to oppose the use of artificial intelligence in society, or would it not change your mind either way? Artificial intelligence...

Much more likely to support
Somewhat more likely to support
Somewhat more likely to oppose
Much more likely to oppose
Does not change my mind either way
Don't Know / No Opinion

Can perform dangerous or difficult human tasks, such as drilling for fuel, mining, and space exploration

  • 32%
  • 30%
  • 8%
  • 5%
  • 9%
  • 16%

Can be used for credit or debit card fraud detection

  • 26%
  • 31%
  • 9%
  • 9%
  • 9%
  • 16%

Allows for greater precision and accuracy, while decreasing the risk of human error

  • 24%
  • 33%
  • 10%
  • 6%
  • 9%
  • 18%

Allows for tasks to be performed without sleep or breaks, and are able to function without stopping

  • 19%
  • 29%
  • 11%
  • 9%
  • 12%
  • 19%

Will likely develop faster than laws and government regulations needed to provide oversight

  • 12%
  • 17%
  • 20%
  • 20%
  • 11%
  • 20%

Disagreement regarding levels of private investment in AI innovation

Do you think companies and businesses should be...

Investing more in artificial intelligence initiatives

  • 20%

Investing less in artificial intelligence initiatives

  • 17%

They are investing the right amount

  • 23%

They should not be investing at all

  • 12%

Don't Know / No Opinion

  • 28%
Investing more in artificial intelligence initiatives
Investing less in artificial intelligence initiatives
They are investing the right amount
They should not be investing at all
Don't Know / No Opinion

Topline

  • 20%
  • 17%
  • 23%
  • 12%
  • 28%

Gender: Male

  • 27%
  • 16%
  • 25%
  • 10%
  • 22%

Gender: Female

  • 14%
  • 17%
  • 21%
  • 13%
  • 35%

Age: 18-29

  • 27%
  • 22%
  • 19%
  • 11%
  • 22%

Age: 30-44

  • 22%
  • 20%
  • 21%
  • 13%
  • 24%

Age: 45-64

  • 17%
  • 15%
  • 26%
  • 12%
  • 38%

Age: 65+

  • 20%
  • 19%
  • 25%
  • 11%
  • 25%

Democrats

  • 20%
  • 19%
  • 25%
  • 11%
  • 25%

Independents

  • 21%
  • 14%
  • 19%
  • 12%
  • 34%

Republicans

  • 20%
  • 16%
  • 26%
  • 12%
  • 26%

Adults hold varying views on whether the government should be investing more in the development of AI, mirroring sentiment regarding private sector spending

Do you think government should be...

Investing more in artificial intelligence initiatives

  • 22%

Investing less in artificial intelligence initiatives

  • 17%

They are investing the right amount

  • 18%

They should not be investing at all

  • 16%

Don't Know / No Opinion

  • 27%
Investing more in artificial intelligence initiatives
Investing less in artificial intelligence initiatives
They are investing the right amount
They should not be investing at all
Don't Know / No Opinion

Topline

  • 22%
  • 17%
  • 18%
  • 16%
  • 27%

Gender: Male

  • 28%
  • 15%
  • 21%
  • 16%
  • 20%

Gender: Female

  • 16%
  • 18%
  • 16%
  • 16%
  • 34%

Age: 18-29

  • 23%
  • 24%
  • 14%
  • 14%
  • 25%

Age: 30-44

  • 25%
  • 19%
  • 17%
  • 14%
  • 25%

Age: 45-64

  • 21%
  • 14%
  • 21%
  • 18%
  • 26%

Age: 65+

  • 18%
  • 9%
  • 19%
  • 18%
  • 35%

Democrats

  • 22%
  • 20%
  • 19%
  • 13%
  • 26%

Independents

  • 20%
  • 15%
  • 16%
  • 16%
  • 33%

Republicans

  • 24%
  • 15%
  • 20%
  • 19%
  • 23%