Google and NASA announced that they have achieved ‘quantum supremacy.’ Their quantum computer solved a problem in 200 seconds, which would take 10,000 years for the world’s fastest supercomputer to solve.
Google’s quantum processor- Bristlecone (72 – Qubit gate system) recently secured the top spot for the world’s largest quantum computer processor. Before, IBM’s quantum processor with 50 Qubit gate system acclaimed the position.
What is Quantum Computing?
This non-classical model of computation uses quantum mechanical principles like quantum entanglement and superposition. Quantum computers can perform certain tasks that classical computers cannot within a reasonable timeline. The world of quantum is indeed mysterious. Unlike the classical ones, they can store information as zero or one or the superposition of both.
Several tech giants like IBM, Intel, Microsoft, and Google (along with NASA and USRA) have already started investing tons of money into this field.
Computational chemistry, financial applications, optimizations, quantum machine learning, etc. are generally good targets of quantum computing applications. However, Quantum computing has spread its roots far and wide from insurance to agriculture.
5 Industry Applications of Quantum Computing
Quantum Computing in Insurance
Quantum computing is a rising phenomenon in the Gartner Hype Cycle. The hype cycle is a graphical representation of technologies’ maturity, adoption & applications across industries, and the benefits they bring to the businesses. It is expected to become one of the greatest disruptions of the age. Quantum computing can process huge datasets in a fraction of a second that would have previously taken days and weeks. It can also calculate almost any kind of risks, such as the impact of an approaching hurricane.
Mitch Wein and Tom Kramer offer various use cases of quantum computing in “Quantum Computing and Insurance: Overview and Potential Players.” However, this technology isn’t yet available for commercial use, unlike AI.
The insurance industry is simplifying many of its back and front-office operations through AI, it is still restricted by barriers of binary computing. Quantum computing can unlock and change the entire dynamics of how insurance companies carry out complex calculations. Insurtech companies are creating and testing solutions around this approach and its effects will soon be visible.
Quantum Computing in Retail
In the future, Quantum computing will remould our economic, industrial, academic, and societal landscape. A quantum computer can solve complex problems much faster than a classical computer in a given time frame. The retail sector generates a huge amount of data which is analyzed to study shoppers’ demographics & preferences and manage the supply chains efficiently.
With the introduction of quantum computers, the process of analyzing the data will become much faster and easier- hence making it easy to deliver a highly personalized experience to the customers. Microsoft envisions a future where quantum computing is available to a broad audience, scaling as needed to solve some of the world’s toughest challenges.
The quantum approach in retail begins within a tool we are acquainted with- such as Visual Studio. It provides development resources to build and promote quantum solutions, and it continues with deployment through Azure for a streamlined combination of both quantum and classical processing.
Quantum Computing in Gaming
Being a very new technology in itself, quantum computing can take game development experience to a whole new level. In the future, one can implement it into game development in interesting ways such as procedural generations, random generation of content, and many more. But today it’s hampered by the fact that you need to make a game decisively solvable and this is going to be a lot easier with a quantum computer.
Quantum Computing in Healthcare
Quantum computing could provide unprecedented power and speed of processing as well as novel and fundamentally different algorithmic search and data homogenization strategies.
From the healthcare perspective, quantum computing technology can lead to “dramatic” accelerations in speed and performance.
“MRIs were basically invented because of our acquired understanding of quantum physics, and getting the true quantum computer will allow us to truly understand the nature of all matter, which means everything from better medicine with fewer side effects to better diagnostics,”
– Roger Grimes, data-driven defence evangelist at KnowBe4, told HealthcareITNews.
With increased computing available, clinicians could easily review CT scans over time and quickly identify changes and anomalies. Similarly, it can accelerate precision medicine. With quantum computing’s enhanced data processing abilities, medical practitioners can quickly identify targeted chemotherapy protocols and with more customization.
Quantum Computing in Agriculture
A Quantum computer in agriculture could help in detecting weed through an invasive weed optimization algorithm. Farmers can hence, effectively craft fertilizers.
Almost all the fertilizers contain ammonia. Therefore efficient manufacturing of ammonia or its substitute will result in cheaper and less energy-intensive fertilizer generation. However, there hasn’t been substantial progress because the number of possible catalyst combinations to do so is infinite. A Quantum computer can quickly analyze and come up with a catalytic combination, which is beyond the abilities of our largest supercomputers.
Is Disruption ‘Near’ for Quantum Computing?
In the past few years, governments worldwide and giant tech companies such as Google, IBM, Microsoft, Alibaba, and many others have been investing heavily in quantum computing.
With quantum supremacy, a quantum computer can perform operations that a classical computer practically cannot. Despite the far-reaching goal, tremendous progress significant technical barriers must be surmounted before achieving its potential. This would require stable hardware, a commercial platform for software development and development of cloud computing capabilities to unleash the ultimate quantum supremacy.