Quantum computing a step closer to reality, says IBM

Quantum computing a step closer to reality, says IBM
Quantum computing - potentially awesome

IBM is set to announce major advances which it claims will take us a major step closer to actually seeing a working quantum computer.

The prospect of quantum computers has intrigued scientists for years, but despite the potential, actually turning it into a reality has proved troublesome, with quantum decoherence caused by outside factors such as temperature and radiation.

All that could be set to change, with IBM's research arm set to announce how it has broken three records that take us ever closer to quantum computers.


"Using a variety of techniques in the IBM labs, scientists have established three new records for reducing errors in elementary computations and retaining the integrity of quantum mechanical properties in quantum bits (qubits) – the basic units that carry information within quantum computing," explained IBM.

"IBM has chosen to employ superconducting qubits, which use established microfabrication techniques developed for silicon technology, providing the potential to one day scale up to and manufacture thousands or millions of qubits."


So why do we care? Well, quantum computers could feasibly work on millions of computations at the same time, something that is fairly limited in even the most powerful current computers.

"The quantum computing work we are doing shows it is no longer just a brute force physics experiment. It's time to start creating systems based on this science that will take computing to a new frontier," said IBM scientist Matthias Steffen.

Don't stick your current PC in the rubbish bin just yet though, it will be years not months until we see mass market quantum computing (even if everything goes well) and currently IBM is talking about an 'intimate' link up between current computers and the quantum computer as a workable solution.

Patrick Goss

Patrick Goss is the ex-Editor in Chief of TechRadar. Patrick was a passionate and experienced journalist, and he has been lucky enough to work on some of the finest online properties on the planet, building audiences everywhere and establishing himself at the forefront of digital content.  After a long stint as the boss at TechRadar, Patrick has now moved on to a role with Apple, where he is the Managing Editor for the App Store in the UK.