Quantum: Computing Re-imagined
Quantum computers are designed to harness the extraordinary power of quantum mechanics, a subset of physics, to re-imagine what is possible. They introduce a fundamentally different computation method which promises capacity that is not possible with existing computers. Quantum computers could transform deep learning, artificial intelligence (AI), and numerous computing tasks that require immense power — e.g. quantum computers could enhance AI by detecting critical patterns in big data much quicker than current computers.,
Unique quantum mechanical properties — i.e. superposition and entanglement — enable this transformative form of computing power. Superposition occurs when an atom with an electric charge, i.e. an ion, exists in more than one location at the same time thereby forming a quantum bit or a qubit. Qubits are highly valuable because they can be used to process large amounts of information much faster than with existing computers. Entanglement happens when two ions in superposition marry and — although these ions are joined — they stay separated by large distances and completely isolated from each other. Large amounts of entangled qubits further augments the capacity of quantum computers, i.e. they empower these quantum-enabled computers to execute exponentially more computations simultaneously. However, developing large systems of qubits to exploit these distinct quantum mechanical properties is extremely difficult because of the fragile nature of qubits. Nevertheless, a key reason for the surge of investments in quantum computing, from governments to private organizations, is their astonishing potential to solve intractable problems, to introduce new capabilities, and to execute tasks that command immense computing power with unmatched rapidity.
New Microsoft Patents Signal Advances Towards Scalable Quantum Computers and Impending Rupture of Strategic Hardware Partnerships
To establish global leadership in the quantum computing market — which is expected to grow at a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 56.0% by 2030 and reach an estimated value of $65 billion in this same period — Microsoft has selected a strategy that leverages a distinct technique, i.e. topological quantum computing (TQC). TQC is simply one of many techniques that is being used to develop quantum computers. Companies use this TQC method to solve problems that can be detrimental to the quality of the device, such as structural defects that randomly occur during fabrication of quantum devices. This TQC approach seems to be progressing for Microsoft. A recent discovery further expounded the potential effectiveness of this technique. Essentially, 8 weeks ago — on September 15th — two TQC patents were awarded to Microsoft by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO): US 10777728 B2 and US 10777605 B2. These two patents are notable because successful execution of this TQC approach may rupture Microsoft’s existing strategic partnerships in quantum computing hardware. Once their own fleet of quantum computers — based on TQC — are established, the company may not continue to rely on their competitors’ hardware. Furthermore, this TQC method has the potential to become the growth engine that solidifies Microsoft’s position in the new quantum era.
About the Author
Maëva Ghonda is a Scientist who also specializes in Corporate Strategy, Competitive Intelligence and Patent Law. As a strategist, Maëva creates investment theses by identifying mega-trends that will profoundly disrupt global commerce.
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 Patent No. US 10777605 B2