We have been reading about quantum computers being developed and tested in labs.

And also, we have quantum simulator programs that use limited virtual qubits (up to 30-40 qubits if cloud-based). And we have also started learning new quantum computing languages like Q#.

But do we really have actual commercial quantum computers ready with physical qubits?

  • $\begingroup$ Related: quantumcomputing.stackexchange.com/questions/171/… This question states that you have to be careful to specify 1) When is a device a quantum computer (note that there is more than one kind!) and 2) When is something considered to be 'commercial'? As of now, this question is simply too broad. $\endgroup$ – Discrete lizard Mar 28 '18 at 9:49
  • $\begingroup$ @Discretelizard For 2, 'commercial' just means something that can be bought (or presumably rented) in this case. For 1, it has to demonstrate quantum effects, as there aren't any more specifications like universal or fault tolerant $\endgroup$ – Mithrandir24601 Mar 28 '18 at 12:52
  • $\begingroup$ @Mithrandir24601 Yes, but is 'demonstrate quantum effects' enough? If I tape a box with qubits to my laptop, the box 'demonstrates quantum effects'. Is my laptop now a quantum computer? I think something stronger is required: that the 'quantum effects' are used effectively for the computation! This is a highly non-trivial assesment! $\endgroup$ – Discrete lizard Mar 28 '18 at 13:07

That depends on your definitions of "commercial" and of "quantum computer".

The company D-Wave Systems has been offering what they call quantum computers commercially since 2011. Many things seem to point towards those being adiabatic quantum computers (though people disagree on this). That doesn't quite fit the kind of quantum computers that are becoming popular right now though. You can check this question and its answers for more information on that discussion.

Companies such as IBM in the other hand are offering access to circuit model quantum computers (with physical qubits). IBM specifically does this in the IBM Q project via their website and a programming interface. They cooperate with commercial companies to explore possibilities in the quantum computing field. (A similar offer is available from Rigetti Computing via their Rigetti Forrest project.) That's not what most people would call "commercial quantum computers" though.

So the answer truly is: It depends.

  • $\begingroup$ There are some minor grammatical errors ---> "That depends on what you define both as "commercial" and as a "quantum computer". Also, the spelling "commercialy" in the second sentence. Other than that, good answer! $\endgroup$ – Sanchayan Dutta Mar 28 '18 at 9:43
  • $\begingroup$ @Blue You're welcome to suggest an edit to improve the grammar. ;-) $\endgroup$ – blalasaadri Mar 28 '18 at 11:35

Ready for useful large scale applications? No.

However there do exist machines such as IBM's Quantum Experience with real physical qubits on a chip as well as Google announcing this month a new machine with 72 qubits.

D-Wave likes to tag itself as the first commercially available quantum computer however determining if it is indeed quantum seems to have been left as an exercise to the user. The D-Wave is available for commercial applications for a hefty price if you'd like to purchase a machine.


From an article I read a while ago, it seems like IBM has a 20-qbit quantum computing as a service (QCAAS as I'd like to call it).

They officially call it IBM Q: https://www.research.ibm.com/ibm-q/

Here's an excerpt from the linked article (Nov 10, 2017):

IBM makes 20 qubit quantum computing machine available as a cloud service

IBM has been offering quantum computing as a cloud service since last year when it came out with a 5 qubit version of the advanced computers.

Today, the company announced that it’s releasing 20-qubit quantum computers, quite a leap in just 18 months.

  • $\begingroup$ Perhaps you could expand on this link and article (summarizing it would be a good start) and then . Anyway, welcome to the site. Please be advised that we like extensive and high quality answers here, so perhaps you should look around more before answering. $\endgroup$ – Discrete lizard Mar 28 '18 at 11:57
  • $\begingroup$ Do you mean 5-qubit computer? $\endgroup$ – M. Stern Mar 28 '18 at 12:27
  • $\begingroup$ @M.Stern to their partners, IBM does offer a 20 qubit computer to their clients. (www-03.ibm.com/press/us/en/pressrelease/53374.wss) The 5 qubit computers are open to the general public. $\endgroup$ – blalasaadri Mar 28 '18 at 22:14
  • $\begingroup$ @blalasaadri that's amazing. And apparently they have a 50 qubit prototype. If that's with full control over every single one of them, then this would be a big step forward! $\endgroup$ – M. Stern Mar 29 '18 at 0:13
  • $\begingroup$ @M.Stern Accidentally linked older article. Fixed $\endgroup$ – Gene Mar 29 '18 at 1:51

Commercially, no. But it is something that companies such as Intel have been working on. In-fact, Intel recently announced its new 49-qubit quantum chip & neuromorphic chip.

  • $\begingroup$ Perhaps you could expand on what this thing in your link actually means and how it is an answer to this question. Anyway, welcome to the site. We really prefer high quality answers here. Perhaps you can look around to get an idea. $\endgroup$ – Discrete lizard Mar 28 '18 at 11:55

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