back-to-futureTo many people, 21st October 2015 will be just a regular Wednesday. But, to fans of a certain ’80s movie trilogy, that date will have considerable cultural significance. On 21st October 2015, we will finally reach the date that Marty and Doc visited in the 1989 film ‘Back to the Future 2’.

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The extravagant vision of the future depicted in the film has gone down as a classic moment in cinema history, and we’ll soon be able to see just how accurate the predictions made were. Although it might seem like we’re a world away from hoverboards and flying cars, some recent examples of email marketing show just how accurate some of the movie’s predictions were:

Cashless Payments

What was probably Back to the Future 2’s most accurate prediction was actually just a fleeting moment in the film. In the 2015 section, Biff Tannen can briefly be seen paying for a taxi with his thumb print:

While we may not have thumb print readers on public transport, we are able to use the technology to make cash- and card-less payments. Introduced in the UK in July, Apple Pay lets users pay for items using their phone, tablet or smartwatch. Payments are verified with a reading of the user’s finger or thumb print.

Apple introduced the feature using a typically stylish email marketing campaign:


Robots feature heavily in Back to the Future’s vision of 2015. Robots are seen filling flying cars with petrol:

And there are even a robot dog walkers:

Although not to this extent, the use of robotic and automated technology has increased a huge amount since the film was released. Things like drones and automatic supermarket checkouts bear some resemblance to Back to the Future’s version of 2015, but we have yet to see many robots that can help us with the more mundane household task. Although, this could be set to change. This email, from Nigel O’Hara, showcases a new robot vacuum; something which wouldn’t look out of place in Marty McFly’s 2015:

Video Calls

Although the Internet is notable by its absence in Back to the Future 2, the film’s writers did manage to conjure up something that we are incredibly familiar with these days. Marty McFly talks to his boss via video call; something which could feasibly happen these days:

Although, unlike in the film, we are not limited to making video calls from our big screen television. Programs like Skype have enabled us to make video calls from anywhere in the world, using our computer, smartphone or tablet, as this email illustrates:

Fax Machines

This is one thing that film didn’t get right. In the film, Marty McFly’s boss sends him a fax telling him he’s fired:

Although fax machines are still in use in some places, they are certainly not as ubiquitous as the writers of Back to the Future thought they would be. That’s because there’s one communication method that’s left the fax machine in the dust: email. These days, companies are able to use email to quickly and easily communicate with their employees, customers and clients all over the world at once; something which certainly can’t be said for faxes. As the above example illustrate, email marketing has become one of the most efficient and effective methods of promotion for businesses, and that looks set to continue.

We don’t know for definite what the future will hold (although hoverboards seem unlikely). But, one thing’s for sure: email marketing is here to stay!