A future is an object that can retrieve a value from some provider object (also known as a promise) or function. Simply put in the case of multithreading, a future object will wait until its associated thread has completed and then store its return value.
To retrieve or construct a future object, these functions may be used.
However, a future object can only be used if it is in a valid state. Default future objects constructed from the std::async template function are not valid and must be assigned a valid state during execution.
A std::future references a shared state that cannot be shared to other asynchronous return objects. If multiple threads need to wait for the same shared state, std::shared_future class template should be used.