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Future continuous / future progressive

Future continuous construction: will/shall + be + verb + -ing

Example verb: communicate

I will be communicating  We will be communicating
You will be communicatingYou (guys) will be communicating
He/she/it will be communicating  They will be communicating
(1) Future continuous or the future progressive is used to talk about an action that will be in progress at a moment in the future.
  • will be lying on the beach by this time tomorrow.
  • We shall be flying to Russia on Friday.
  • They will be handling the case themselves.
(2) We use the future continuous to talk about parallel actions in the future, that is, two or more actions that happen at the same time.
  • When he is doing his homework, she will be cleaning the kitchen.
  • By 21h tomorrow morning I will be doing the garden while they clean the house.
  • This afternoon they will be cleaning the house, preparing the meal and having a drink together.
(3) We can use the future continuous to predict the present or to say/guess what might be happening in any given situation.
  • Let them be alone, they will be deciding his future.
  • If you call him now, He’ll be talking to his mum. 
  • I wouldn’t go in there, They will be discussing important things.
  • Let’s not arrive before 20h, they will be preparing the dinner.

English Verbs – The Complete Guide

Lesson #26: Future continuous

Explanation

Construction: will/shall + be + gerund (verb + -ing)  

Example verb: talk

I will be talking   We will be talking
You will be talking You (guys) will be talking
He/she/it will be talking     They will be talking
  • The future continuous is used to talk about an action that will be in progress at a moment in the future.
  • We use the future continuous to talk about parallel actions in the future, that is, two or more actions that happen at the same time.
  • We can use the future continuous to predict the present or to say/guess what might be happening in any given situation.
Context
  • What will you be doing this weekend, Jane?1
  • Not a lot to be honest. I’ll be seeing some friends and staying at home.2 What about you?
  • I won’t be doing anything,3 because I’m exhausted from the week’s work,4 and I have zero desire to do anything to be honest.
  • Sounds like a good plan!
  • You bet! So, what are you planning to do with your friends?5
  • Well, I’ll be seeing a couple of old colleagues6 from my last job and we’ll be going out to the centre for a few drinks.
  • Sounds like a plan. So, these old colleagues of yours, has it been a long time since you’ve seen them?7
  • It certainly has been a long time. I haven’t seen them in over five years.8 I never bother to call them because I assume, they’ll be spending time with their children.9 They’re generally very tied up with all that stuff.10
Analysis
  1. What will you be doing this weekend, Jane? The future continuous is being used ‘will + be + doing’ to describe an action in the future that will be in progress.
  2. I’ll be seeing some friends and staying at home. The future continuous ‘I’ll be seeing’ describes an action in the future that will be in progress.
  3. I won’t be doing anything. The future continuous in its negative form ‘won’t be doing’ is being used to talk about an action that won’t be in progress in the future.
  4. I’m exhausted from the week’s work. Be careful to use the possessive (‘s) in English correctly. The thing being possessed ‘work’, is being possessed by ‘week’. Therefore, because ‘week’ is possessing ‘work’ you need to add ‘s to ‘week’, hence ‘week’s work’.
  5. What are you planning to do with your friends? The present continuous ‘are you planning’ is being used here to talk about the near future.
  6. I’ll be seeing a couple of old colleagues. The future continuous is being used ‘I’ll + be + seeing’ to describe an action in the future that will be in progress.
  7. So, these old colleagues of yours, has it been a long time since you’ve seen them? The present perfect (has it been) is being used to talk about an action or experience, that due to its nature, continues until the present moment. Because the experience of ‘not seeing your colleagues’ continues until the present moment.
  8. I haven’t seen them in over five years. The present perfect is used to describe an experience that continues until the present moment.
  9. I never bother to call them because I assume, they’ll be spending time with their children. The future continuous ‘they’ll be spending’ is used here to guess what might be happening in any given situation.
  10. They’re generally very tied up with all that stuff. The phrasal verb ‘tie up’ basically takes the meaning of ‘be busy’ or ‘be very occupied with people or things’. I.e. I’m tied up with problems. She’s tied up in her love life.

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