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Wednesday, October 19, 2022

Assessing the Quantum-Computing Landscape

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Assessing the Quantum-Computing Landscape

By Advait Deshpande

Communications of the ACM, October 2022, Vol. 65 No. 10, Pages 57-65


An emerging discourse in both popular and academic literature now exists regarding the potentially game-changing impact of quantum computing and quantum communications.6,18 Perceived returns on investment in quantum computing and its potential to disrupt the current classical digital-computing landscape has intensified competition amongst the so-called big tech companies and selected high-performing start-ups to deliver a functional quantum computer.15,17 While several software tools have been made available either freely or on an open source basis, most research and development on hardware by big tech companies and start-ups remains proprietary. This makes it challenging to realistically assess available quantum-computing capabilities and to distinguish the hype from market realities.1,23 Despite increasing, potentially unrealistic expectations and timelines associated with quantum computing,14,38 there appear to be a limited number of studies assessing the technology landscape from a market perspective as of 2021–2022.

This article aims to assess quantum-computing developments with a focus on the market readiness of developed technologies and the reported levels of investment in them by the following key players: big tech companies, start-ups, and nation-states. It draws on desk research to present this market assessment. The discussion in this article is intended to be an initial, exploratory review of the current state-of-play rather than a comprehensive investigation of the market players. The aim is to offer a more informed understanding of the current capabilities of quantum-computing technologies and the implications they hold for computing's future. The findings are expected to be of interest to quantum-computing researchers; policymakers; market players, such as venture-capital investors, technology companies, and nation-states investing resources in quantum computing; and those who follow emerging technology trends.  ... ' 

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