IBM’s online quantum machine gets faster

Mar 6, 2017

By Jane Wakefield

IBM has made its quantum computing system commercially available to businesses and beefed up an existing system used by the research community.

The firm is hoping to boost the numbers of people able to use such computers.

The machine, based in New York, has been available via the internet since May last year.

Future applications include the discovery of new materials and medicines as well as making artificial intelligence much more powerful.

Tricky problem

Since the system went online last year, more than 40,000 users have run over 275,000 experiments on it.

While the system it has made publicly available is currently only as powerful as a standard laptop, it is an important first step, said IBM scientist Dr Jerry Chow.

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4 comments on “IBM’s online quantum machine gets faster

  • Hold on:

    IBM’s quantum computer will now offer simulation of 20 qubits, up from its original five.



    Qubits are, by their nature, massively unstable and maintaining even one is tricky.

    So they’re not actually saying they’ve got one, or made one, or whatever one does with Qubits, only that they are simulating some. Presumably, using traditional “bits” in conventional servers somewhere in the clouds.

    Nothing to get over-excited about just yet. Your e-banking credentials remain safe (unless of course you use a trivially simple password or leave it written on a post-it note, or get yourself hacked in an ever increasing number of ways).

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  • From a year ago is this really good account of their actual 5 qubit hardware.

    Follow the links to the IBM website for fantastically thorough and ground up details of the this emerging discipline and the use of the 20qubit simulator. (You can look around without an account.)

    This is a lot of serious educational and marketing effort for their 50 to 100 qubit hardware target within the next decade. They need to create some market pull….

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