AWS launches quantum computing service Braket; opens Quantum Solutions Lab

AWS launches quantum computing service Braket; opens Quantum Solutions Lab
Photo Credit: Reuters
3 Dec, 2019

Seattle-based cloud service giant Amazon Web Services (AWS) has launched quantum computing service Amazon Braket. The service will let customers explore, evaluate, and experiment with quantum computing hardware to gain in-house experience as they plan for the future, the company said in a statement.

AWS is somewhat late to the quantum cloud race. The Big Blue launched its quantum computing service, IBM Q, back in 2017.  The second-largest player in the cloud market today, Microsoft, recently launched its new service Azure Quantum. Microsoft gives its customers access to hardware from other companies, particularly Honeywell and IonQ.

However, none of these services is ready for adoption at enterprises and is in the proof of concept stage or experimental stage. 

That said, the e-commerce giant with its AWS cloud service is the largest player in the cloud market today, which gives it an advantage over its rivals, Microsoft and Google. 

AWS is not building its own quantum computer. According to the company, the new service will enable scientists, researchers, and developers to begin experimenting with computers from quantum hardware providers, including D-Wave, IonQ, and Rigetti,  in a single place. 

Canada-based D-Wave and US-headquartered IonQ and Rigetti are startups racing against technology giants like Google, Microsoft and IBM to solve quantum computing challenges. 

The announcements were made at the annual AWS flagship event re:Invent at Las Vegas. 

The company has also launched AWS Center for Quantum Computing to accelerate the development of quantum computing technologies and applications. 

The centre will partner with California Institute of Technology (Caltech), and other top academic research institutions to collaborate on the research and development of new quantum computing technologies.  

Meanwhile, it has also announced AWS Quantum Solutions Lab that will connect customers with quantum computing experts at AWS, academia, and industry partners to collaborate on experiments and develop quantum applications.

“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,” said Charlie Bell, senior vice president, utility computing services at AWS. Bell added that quantum computing will be a cloud-first technology and that the cloud will be the main way customers access the hardware.  

AWS said that quantum computing has the potential to solve computational problems that are beyond the reach of classical computers. The technology promises to transform areas such as energy storage, chemical engineering, material science, drug discovery, process optimisation, and machine learning. 

However, the application of quantum computing to date has been limited mainly to proof of concept studies with limited practical use.

Recently Google had said that it had achieved quantum computing breakthrough while IBM had disputed Google's claim