Driverless ambulances? No thanks: survey

Colin Brinsden
(Australian Associated Press)

Most Australians are generally happy with government services embracing the digital age but would draw the line at a drone delivering their passport or being taken to hospital in a driverless ambulance.

A new survey has found that while 55 per cent of respondents say they feel confident using public sector digital services, almost half believe there is room for improvement.

Their main beefs are slow response times (31 per cent) and the need to input a lot of background information (27 per cent), the survey of 1500 Australians polled by digital solutions provider Riverbed Technology found.

“At a time when Australians are more connected to their devices than ever before, their perceptions of and confidence in government is directly tied to the quality of the digital services being offered,” its vice president for Australian and New Zealand Keith Buckley said on Tuesday.

Two-thirds of respondents want to see a single sign-on to their government services, a fraction less want the ability to pay bills through an online portal and just over half want to see reminders and updates via email and SMS.

Just over three in five Australians would be happy for governments to incorporate facial biometric matching to digital services, such as authentication for health analysis, and a similar amount would like self-service check-in for medical appointments.

But over half would not want to see drones delivering confidential documents, like passports, or driverless ambulances.

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