With the rise of technology, so too comes the rise of a new category of intimacy. Digisexuals, or people who primarily use technology for sexual satisfaction, could soon become more prolific in society, according to experts.

“It is safe to say the era of immersive virtual sex has arrived,” said Neil McArthur, the director of the Center for Professional and Applied Ethics at the University of Manitoba and the author of a new scientific study on digisexuality.

McArthur and a team from the university published a new report in the Journal of Sexual and Relationship Therapy detailing the need to be prepared for a rise in digisexuality.

“As these technologies advance, their adoption will grow and many people will come to identify themselves as ‘digisexuals’ – people whose primary sexual identity comes through the use of technology, McArthur said, according to the Telegraph. “Many people will find that their experiences with this technology become integral to their sexual identity and some will prefer them to direct sexual interactions with humans.”

Sex Robot 2 Catalan nanotechnology engineer Sergi Santos holds the head of Samantha, a sex doll packed with artificial intelligence providing her the capability to respond to different scenarios and verbal stimulus, in his house in Rubi, north of Barcelona, Spain, Mar. 31, 2017. Photo: Getty Images

Technology like virtual reality has become increasingly realistic and now includes more ways than ever to satisfy sexual appetites. Some pornography channels have begun to offer three-dimensional role-playing games. Perhaps most notably, realistic sex robots have become available to purchase. The company Abyss Creations created an “Android Love Doll” that boasts 50 different sexual positions and comes complete with an app that learns as the user interacts with it.

Buyers are also able to handpick a doll to their tastes, altering hair color and other body parts. Many dolls have realistic silicone skin and some form of artificial intelligence that allow them to interact with a user. Others go as far as simulating an orgasm during sex. And while some companies sell such robots for more than $20,000, that price will likely decrease over time as technology becomes more accessible.

“There is no question that sexbots are coming,” he said. “People will form an intense connection with their robot companions. These robots will be tailor-made to meet people’s desires and will do things that human partners cannot or will not do. For this reason, significant numbers of people will likely come to use robots as their primary mode of sexual experience.”

Some experts believe it’s likely these robots will surpass mere sexual relationships in the future. Dr. David Levy, an artificial intelligence expert said in a 2016 conference that even marriage with between a sex robot and a human will be possible.

“We have companion robots and a partner robot is the logical continuation of the trend,” Levy said. “In the next 10 years, it is perfectly achievable in software to create a robot companion that is everything that people might want in a spouse – patient, kind, loving, trusting, respectful and uncomplaining.”