D-Wave announces launch of new Advantage quantum computer for business use


D-Wave announces launch of new Advantage quantum computer for business use
Credit: D-Wave

Canadian based D-Wave has announced on its blog that it has developed a new quantum computer for use by businesses. Called Advantage, the new system has 5,000 qubits and 15-way qubit connectivity. The new machine will be made available to business customers over the Internet via the Leap quantum cloud service.

Over the past several years, several companies have dedicated resources to the development of a true quantum computer that can tackle problems conventional computers cannot handle. Progress on developing such computers has been slow, however, especially when compared with the early development of the conventional computer. As part of the research effort, companies have taken different approaches. Google and IBM, for example, are working on gate-model quantum computer technology, in which qubits are modified as an algorithm is executed. D-Wave, in sharp contrast, has been focused on developing so-called annealer technology, in which qubits are cooled during execution of an algorithm, which allows for passively changing their value.

Comparing the two is next to impossible because of their functional differences. Thus, using 5,000 qubits in the Advantage system does not necessarily mean that it is any more useful than the 100-qubit systems currently being tested by IBM or Google. Still, the announcement suggests that businesses are ready to start taking advantage of the increased capabilities of quantum systems. D-Wave notes that several customers are already using their system for a wide range of applications. Menten AI, for example, has used the system to design new proteins; grocery chain Save-On-Foods has been using it to optimize business operations; Accenture has been using it to develop business applications; Volkswagen has used the system to develop a more efficient car painting system.

As part of its announcement, D-Wave noted that business customers will now have access to a new topology,

D-Wave launches its 5,000+ qubit Advantage system


D-Wave today announced the launch of its new Advantage quantum computers. These new systems, with over 5,000 qubits and 15-way qubit connectivity, are now available in the company’s Leap cloud computing platform. That’s up from about 2,000 qubits in the previous system, which featured six-way connectivity. Using Leap’s hybrid solver, which combines classic CPUs and GPUs with the company’s quantum system, users can now solve significantly more complex problems, thanks to both the higher qubit and connection count.

“With over twice the number of qubits, with over twice the connectivity, with over five times the number of devices on the superconducting chip, we’re still able to program it in the same amount of time, read out in the same amount of time, run it at the same temperature — which means we’re able to continue scaling the technology,” said D-Wave CEO Alan Baratz, who is never afraid to compare his company’s systems against the competition. “This is a really important point because, over the years, there have been various so-called experts who have said that the D-Wave technology just wouldn’t scale. And yet, we’re the only quantum computing technology that has scaled.”

Image Credits: D-Wave Systems

Some of D-Wave’s competitors, who have scaled up their systems over time, will likely take offense with this, but it’s worth noting that D-Wave’s quantum annealing approach is quite different from what competitors are using.

As Baratz explained, this new processor was designed from the ground up, using a new fabrication stack.

Coming next month, D-Wave is also launching a major update to its solver, the discrete quadratic solver.

“Up until now our hybrid solver has worked on binary quadratic problems, problems where the variables were binary variables — zero or one, or plus and minus one, if you’re a physicist,” Baratz explained. You