VivaTech, in partnership with McKinsey & Company, is publishing a series of monthly articles looking at breakthrough technologies, starting with quantum computing. 

A quantum computer

A powerful new form of computing could begin paying off for businesses within the next five-10 years. Here’s how companies can develop a game plan.

Quantum computers have the potential to resolve complex problems across many different industries and applications, including finance, transportation, chemicals, and cybersecurity. In just a few hours of computing time, they can optimize financial portfolios, create logistics networks, or train AI to power autonomous vehicles. None of this will happen overnight. In fact, many businesses won’t be able to reap significant value from quantum computing for a decade or more, although a few will see gains : +$1 trillion value potential by mid-2030 in 5 industries : finance, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, TMT, automotive.

The potential is so great, and the technological advances are coming so rapidly, that every business leader should have a basic understanding of how the technology works, the kinds of problems it can help solve, and how she or he should prepare to harness its potential.

Quantum computers will alter industries in fundamental ways, that’s why businesses leaders should start developing a strategy for quantum computing today.

“Quantum computing is not an iterative technology. It has the potential to be both transformative and disruptive. Technologies of this sort can appear at unpredictable speed and cause unpredictable impact. The time to act is now, so you will be ready when quantum computers arrive”.

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Going further: IBM use case

IBM Quantum provides cloud-based software public and free access to quantum computers.

QISKIT, an open-sourceframework which provides tools for creating, manipulating quantum programs and running them on prototype quantum devices such as on IBM Q Experience or on simulators on a local computer.

Quantum computing is already being used in chemistry, AI, optimization and in finance. The QISKIT Community is made up of over 20,000 users and has generated over 240,000 downloads to date.

Real research is happening with the IBM Q Experience, through 200 scientific papers citing access to IBM Q tools and over 29 million experiments.