Feeds

D-Wave to bust 1,000-qubit barrier with new quantum compute device

Bags $30m in funding as it preps quantum-as-a-service thing

Intelligent flash storage arrays

D-Wave is planning a big expansion into quantum computing hardware and their software, helped in part by $30m in extra funding from venture capitalists.

Vern Brownell, CEO of D-Wave, told The Register that his firm will use the bulk of the cash injection to expand out its software side to make it easier for customers to use the Canadian firm's quantum devices. But the money will also boost development of new systems and speed up the introduction of quantum-as-a-service.

"On one level we already offer quantum-as-a-service, where customers send up data for analysis," he explained, citing a financial firm and a cancer screening system that use D-Wave's computers.

"But to truly put quantum in the cloud you'd need more backend systems and staff, better technical support and the infrastructure that comes with a cloud system, and that's some way away."

D-Wave won’t be the first to offer a quantum-as-a-service option, however. Boffins at Bristol University in the UK have been offering such a service since September, and it's free to use.

In terms of new hardware, D-Wave will have a new generation of quantum computing devices out by the end of the year. The current model processes 512 qubits, but the new hardware will manage 1,152. That may seem like a strange number, but the hardware units can each handle eight qubits and the system stacks them in a 12 by 12 grid.

(What is a qubit, you ask. Well, it's not like a normal binary bit. It's rather more mind-bending than that, but they're very useful for calculating and storing all possible outcomes of a particular calculation.)

So far customers have been found for two of the new quantum computing systems, Brownell said, and some of D-Wave's existing customers have expressed a strong interest in upgrading.

But the firm's immediate focus is getting the software side sorted. Writing code for D-Wave's systems has proved difficult for some, and this has also muddied the waters regarding the performance of the firm's hardware.

An academic paper in last month's Science, which claimed that D-Wave's hardware was no faster than a standard computer, was largely down to the software parameters, Brownell said, and the firm wants to make new software that makes its systems easier to use to their full potential. ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
SECRET U.S. 'SPACE WARPLANE' set to return from SPY MISSION
Robot minishuttle X-37B returns after almost 2 years in orbit
No sail: NASA spikes Sunjammer
'Solar sail' demonstrator project binned
LOHAN crash lands on CNN
Overflies Die Welt en route to lively US news vid
You can crunch it all you like, but the answer is NOT always in the data
Hear that, 'data journalists'? Our analytics prof holds forth
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
Carry On Cosmonaut: Willful Child is a poor taste Star Trek parody
Cringeworthy, crude and crass jokes abound in Steven Erikson’s sci-fi debut
Origins of SEXUAL INTERCOURSE fished out of SCOTTISH LAKE
Fossil find proves it first happened 385 million years ago
America's super-secret X-37B plane returns to Earth after nearly TWO YEARS aloft
674 days in space for US Air Force's mystery orbital vehicle
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.