HDB things we are so used to now but will probably not miss in 10 years’ time

Like Black Mirror, but 90% less creepy.

Tsiuwen Yeo | Sponsored | October 12, 2017, 03:00 PM

2007. That’s 10 years ago. Doesn’t seem like too long ago, but it really is.

10 years ago, we went on dates to HMV. Facebook was still something your parents hadn’t discovered. Block catching was the best game. The bubble tea shop under your block was the hottest place to be.

Now? Things are hardly the same anymore. Many things about living in an HDB, too, have changed, except that you are now living in your own flat (but your mother still visits you every other night).

In the same vein, the HDB experience will be very different 10 years down the road. Technology progresses, trends come and go (RIP neighbourhood bubble tea cafes) and people get used to a more efficient way of life.

Sure, it’s different, but indisputably better.

Here are some things we won’t be doing anymore, 10 years later.

We won’t be sneakily folding tabs on parking coupons

Image from HDB

Why not?

With the new mobile parking app Parking.sg, the coupons we're so used to playing with (i.e., try to cheat the system) will be replaced.

Yes, you can still use them after the Parking.sg app is launched, but the coupons are due to be phased out eventually -- these coupons will likely be paraded alongside Good Morning towels as nostalgic Singaporean items of the past.

The bad: No more reusing parking coupons (illegal anyway, you cheapo), cannot have fun tearing out the little circles anymore, cannot park longer for free.

The good: More convenience, no need to face saman aunty anymore, use less paper, save the earth, no more “confetti” waste in HDB carparks.

We will no longer have to clear trays for other lazy Singaporeans

Screenshot from

Why not?

Because Tray Return robots of the future, thanks to the promotion of productive eating houses.

While every other hawker centre and coffee shop has a Tray Return corner nowadays, let’s be honest -- Singaporeans can be quite lazy. Which leaves the cleaning staff, many of whom are elderly, to cope with clearing the trays.

A clean and hygienic solution to this problem is a cute little robot that wheels itself around, so you have no excuse to not clear your own table. Also a great way to build good habits in our kids, we say.

The bad: Not so good for National Steps Challenge participants

The good: Hygiene, can save 10 steps walking to the tray return corner, hygiene, cleaners can focus on cleaning, looks futuristic, HYGIENE.

We won’t have to make people wait while we dig for coins to pay for Kopi-peng

Image from

Why not?

No, it’s not that the kopi uncle decided to treat you cuz you’re holding up the queue (you wish)

In a #smartnation move, more e-payment solutions may be introduced in hawkers centers and HDB coffee shops, so it’ll be convenient for both you and the auntie who’s serving your food. A delight, even.

The bad: No more grateful coffee stall uncle who thanks you for paying in loose change.

The good: No more small change, no more wet notes, auntie uncle less busy ‘cos no need find change for you, hawkers have a consolidated electronic statement that helps with bookkeeping, can always buy food even if you forget your wallet.

We won’t need to buy expensive chains and locks for our bicycles

Image from HDB

Why not?

Once again, technology is here to save your day, time and common space under HDB blocks.

Already launched in Yuhua estate, bluetooth-enabled smart bicycle racks allow cyclists to park without using their own locks.

Users disable and enable the locks on the bicycle rack through an app; it also keeps a detailed record of who parked their bikes there, and for how long.

The best thing? The app helps you to locate available parking racks around you. Nice.

The bad: How to hit 10,000 steps a day when cycling is now so cool?

The good: Your bike is now safe from petty thieves. Technology: 1, Thieves: 0.

We can stop dreaming about getting a cheap thrill on those movable gondolas

Image from

Why not?

Introducing: a robot that cleans and spray paints HDBs. Quite amazing, innit? Imagine what we’ll have in 10 years’ time.

And if you’re worried about the guys who scale the walls of your block to clean or repair a paint job -- when jobs get replaced, new jobs are created. Someone needs to man the robots, for example.

The bad: No more real life superheros in action #goodbyespiderman

The good: Safety (obvious), efficiency (also obvious), productivity (duh).


Can you think of anything else that you won’t be doing 10 years later?

Like they say, the only constant is change. When time and technology are moving forward, it’s best to leverage them to make your life better.

Because a smart nation is made up of smart estates too.

This sponsored post by HDB kind of (sorta) transported us to the future. Yeah.