(CNET) AT&T is researching technology to link quantum computers, hoping to amplify their power much the way networking of conventional computers led to massive supercomputers and services spread across the globe.
AT&T is working with a partnership called Intelligent Quantum Networks and Technologies (INQNET). The work involves researchers from the California Institute of Technology, Stanford University, national laboratories, startups, the military and other institutions.
You can link quantum computers with plain old classical networks — indeed, that’s how today’s early quantum computers are used. But converting communication to the classical realm slows it down and sacrifices the special benefits of entangled quantum data.
That’s why AT&T’s researchers want the quantum links. The ultimate goal of the company’s partnership is to build a quantum internet, INQNET leader Pravahan says. Overcoming the challenges of physics and engineering are immense, but success could open up “fundamentally new capabilities in science and technology,” in the words of Austrian researchers working on the idea.
Note: this is a lengthy, comprehensive article with extensive background information for on quantum technology and principles.