Artificial intelligence could evolve to be "billions of times smarter" than humans.

That's according to Ipswich-based "futurist" Ian Pearson who claims that people will need to merge with machines in order to survive.

Pearson told the Daily Mail: "The fact is that AI can go further than humans, it could be billions of times smarter than humans at this point."

"So we really do need to make sure that we have some means of keeping up."

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Pearson, who works at Futurizon, made the comments during a panel hosted by CNBC at the World Government Summit in Dubai.

He claims humans can protect against the rise of the machines by linking their brains with AI so that they have the same IQ.

"I don't actually think it's safe, just like Elon Musk… to develop these superhuman computers until we have a direct link to the human brain… and then don't get way ahead," he said.

Pearson's comments echo that of ex-Uber and Google engineer Anthony Levandowski who has formed the first church to follow an artificially intelligent being.

The religion, known as "Way of the Future", claims our species can better itself by following the instructions of a robot that is "a billion times smarter than humans".

WOTF will eventually have a gospel called "The Manual", as well as rituals and even a physical place of worship.

Levandowski named himself as "dean" of WOTF, giving him complete control until his death or resignation.

He said his robot god, which will be a "billion times smarter than humans" will take charge of its subjects, who will relinquish power to a being of higher intelligence.

The filed documents for WOTF give its purpose is to "develop and promote the realisation of a Godhead based on Artificial Intelligence".

Workshops and educational programs have already begun in the San Francisco area.

However, not everyone is as welcoming to AI technology as Levandowski.

In August last year, Tesla founder Elon Musk warned that AI poses more of a threat to humanity than North Korea.

"If you're not concerned about AI safety, you should be. Vastly more risk than North Korea," the 46-year-old wrote on Twitter.

"Nobody likes being regulated, but everything (cars, planes, food, drugs, etc) that's a danger to the public is regulated. AI should be too."

Musk has consistently advocated for governments and private institutions to apply regulations on AI technology.

He has argued that controls are necessary in order protect machines from advancing out of human control.