The Amazon Braket quantum computing service will take advantage of hardwar devices developed by Rigetti Computing and other companies. (Rigetti Photo)
Amazon Web Services is leaping into quantum computing with both feet — or maybe more than both feet, in keeping with the weird world of quantum physics.
AWS’ quantum initiative, announced today in conjunction with its re:Invent cloud computing conference in Las Vegas, includes the unveiling of a cloud-based quantum computing service called Amazon Braket, as well as the creation of the AWS Center for Quantum Computing and the Amazon Quantum Solutions Lab.
But wait … there’s more: The Braket computing platform, which is analogous to the Microsoft Azure Quantum platform announced last month, brings together three different hardware approaches to quantum calculation.
One approach is represented by Maryland-based IonQ’s trapped-ion technology, which is also being used for Azure Quantum. The second approach relies on California-based Rigetti’s superconducting chips, and the third approach takes advantage of Burnaby, B.C.-based D-Wave Systems’ quantum annealing devices.
The broad sweep of AWS’ quantum initiative demonstrates that one of the titans of cloud computing is covering its bets as quantum information science matures..
Charlie Bell, senior vice president of utility computing services at AWS, stressed the initiative’s experimental nature.
“With quantum engineering starting to make more meaningful progress, customers are asking for ways to experiment with quantum computers and explore the technology’s potential,” Bell said in a news release. “We believe that quantum computing will be a cloud-first technology, and that the cloud will be the main way customers access the hardware.”
In contrast to the binary, one-or-zero nature of classical computer hardware, quantum computing devices take advantage of atomic-scale phenomena in which bits of quantum information — known as qubits — can represent multiple values, at least until the results of a computation are …read more