Abstract In the future AEMs will become more sophisticated and complex. Detectors will be added to acquire more signals, and coincidence measurements will be used. Surface experiments will be carried out in the specimen chamber. Automation of instrument set-up and operation will be necessary to enable the physicist to concentrate on the specimen. Design principles including ultra-high-vacuum compatibility, remote-detector design and standardization of accessories seem to be necessary. New technologies like high Tc superconductivity, solid state field-emitter technology, modern X-ray and computer technology with CCD image sensors and liquid-metal field ion source technology will be used.