In a large presentation at today’s CES show, IBM described how they are making progress in acquiring customers and working with them to develop applications that will take advantage of quantum computing. Highlights of their presentation include:
- They have expanded their IBM Q Network to include over 100 organizations in industries as far ranging as airlines, automotive, banking and finance, energy, insurance, materials and electronics.
- They recently expanded their startup partners in the IBM Q Network by adding five new companies. By our count, they now have partnerships with 27 different startup companies.
- They described research efforts with Daimler AG (parent of Mercedes) to use quantum computers to model next generation lithium-sulfur batteries for automobiles.
- They are entering a multi-year collaborative effort with Delta Airlines to explore applications of quantum computing in the airline industry.
- They now have over 200, 000 users of their IBM Q systems who have run hundreds of billions of executions on either the simulator or the actual quantum machines. These users have generated over 200 third-party research papers.
Although the current generation of machines may not be quite powerful enough to provide an advantage over the use of a classical computer for commercial applications, it is clear that they are confident they will have more powerful generations of quantum computers in the years ahead that will be able to demonstrate a quantum advantage. So they are taking steps right now to prepare as many customers as possible to utilize quantum computers. As such, IBM is devoting significant resources into marketing and applications as a strategy to recreate the success they had in the 1960’s when they dominated mainframe computing.