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IQT’s “Journal Club:” Monetizing Quantum Computing

A new paper in Communications of the ACM assesses the current investment level and market readiness of the quantum computing landscape.
By Kenna Hughes-Castleberry posted 12 Apr 2024

IQT’s “Journal Club” is a weekly article series that breaks down a recent quantum technology research paper and discusses its impacts on the quantum ecosystem. This article highlights a new study published in IEEE by Nir Kshetri, a professor at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro discussing the many different avenues of monetizing quantum computing. 

The pursuit of quantum computing’s potential has ushered in a new era of technological advancements, with stakeholders across various sectors keen on harnessing its unprecedented computational capabilities for economic gain. According to Nir Kshetri, a professor at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, the crux of monetizing quantum computing lies in its ability to perform certain computational tasks with a speed and efficiency unattainable by classical computers. Kshetri outlines his analysis in a recent paper published in IEEE

Looking at the Current State of Quantum Computing

The methodology examines the current quantum computing landscape, including investment trends, market growth, and the practical applications of quantum technology across key sectors such as pharmaceuticals, automotive, finance, and chemicals. It leverages both quantitative data, such as investment figures and market size projections, and qualitative insights, such as the potential applications and advantages of quantum computing in industry-specific contexts. This holistic approach sheds light on the multifaceted aspects of quantum computing, from its technical capabilities to its real-world applications and economic impact.

Kshetri highlights remarkable speed advantage quantum computing holds over classical computing in specialized tasks, specifically exemplified by the Jiuzhang 3.0 quantum computer’s ability to solve a complex problem much faster than the world’s fastest supercomputer. This computational prowess is not just theoretical but has practical implications, notably in the field of quantum machine learning, where quantum algorithms achieved comparable accuracy to classical models but with significantly fewer parameters and training iterations.

The study also highlights the current investment landscape, with a notable surge in both private and public funding towards quantum computing development, signaling strong confidence in its future value. We’ve seen this with recent funding announcements coming from Alice & Bob, Rolls-Royce, Riverlane, and Xanadu, and others.

Bigger Implications of Monetizing Quantum Computing

There are many different implications in monetizing quantum computing. In the pharmaceutical and healthcare sectors, for instance, quantum computing could revolutionize drug discovery processes, significantly reducing the time and cost associated with bringing new drugs to market. This not only accelerates the development of lifesaving medicines but also opens new revenue streams and cost-saving avenues for pharmaceutical companies. Similarly, in finance, quantum computing’s ability to process and analyze vast datasets at unprecedented speeds could enhance risk assessment models, optimize investment portfolios, and thus potentially unlock billions in additional revenue.

The advent of Quantum Computing as a Service (QCaaS) presents a lucrative business model, enabling companies to access quantum computational power on demand without the hefty upfront costs associated with quantum hardware acquisition. This model democratizes access to quantum computing, allowing a broader range of businesses to explore and exploit quantum advantages for commercial purposes.

Futher Challenges and Outlooks for Monetizing Quantum Computing

Kshetri also underscores the challenges in monetizing quantum computing, including the current limitations of quantum technology in terms of qubit stability and error rates. Despite these hurdles, the continued investment in and development of quantum computing indicate a clear trajectory towards overcoming these challenges and realizing its economic potential.

Kenna Hughes-Castleberry is the Managing Editor at Inside Quantum Technology and the Science Communicator at JILA (a partnership between the University of Colorado Boulder and NIST). Her writing beats include deep tech, quantum computing, and AI. Her work has been featured in National Geographic, Scientific American, Discover Magazine, New Scientist, Ars Technica, and more.

Categories: Education, quantum computing, research

Tags: IQT Journal Club, Monetizing, Nir Kshetri

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