Cloud-based quantum computing is the provision of quantum computing resources and services via the Internet through established cloud computing technologies. Users may access and utilize various hardware and software without any need to purchase or lease any infrastructure. The environment is analogous to concepts such as online banking and social media content creation. While some services might be limited to one or two of the following, others might be all-encompassing:
As noted in Dataconomy’s article titled Quantum computing turns into accessible services with the cloud-based quantum computers, the architecture and performance of available hardware varies significantly. While this steepens the learning curve to become a user, this also increases the likelihood of finding hardware that is most conducive to one’s research. This further culminates in a broad array of languages, tools, samples, tutorials, webinars, courses, and documentation, some of which may lower certain barriers to entry.
Cloud-based quantum computing offers considerable advantages over on-premises solutions. For a non-exhaustive-but-broad sampling, web-based access:
The advantages of cloud-based quantum computing extend beyond those that have been mentioned thus far, such as accessibility, cost-efficiency, innovation acceleration, scalability, global collaboration, training and education, integration with HPC and other technologies, reduced physical security concerns, and access to algorithms and applications. Consideration must be given to the user-friendly interfaces through which all of these devices and services are made accessible. For example, the engineering challenges of online usage might be limited to checking for a green dot labeled “online.” Hardware selection might be a dropdown box and a “run” button. Arranging individual atoms might mean simply typing in their Cartesian coordinates.
Another advantage that is attracting more attention over time is the reduced environmental impact. Not only are quantum computers known to consume less energy than high-performance computers, additional savings can be achieved by sharing resources online and minimizing wasteful idle times between computations. Therefore, less consumption measurably reduces the environmental impact, and sharing resources reduces that impact further.
An article by InfoWorld titled Cloud-based quantum computing lets startups compete with Goliaths expands upon how the cloud democratizes quantum computing and other advanced technologies. While it doesn’t mention premium access with its analogy of a level playing field, there are a considerable number of free resources out there. If a resource isn’t free, it’s most likely available through an affordable pay-as-you-go provider. The payments can usually be made with credit cards and, importantly, without contracts.
For example, you can learn how to do analog neutral atom quantum computing, and solve small problems as you do, with a free installation of the Julia-language Bloqade library on a laptop. For larger, real-world problems, you can pay-as-you-go non-contractually with a credit card while accessing a real neutral atom quantum computer through Amazon Braket or qBraid.
Implementation is more noteworthy for what does not have to be done, rather than what does. Without on-premises infrastructure, there is no infrastructure planning, relatively-little-to-no setup, no integrations harder than API calls, no additional physical security measures, no user-interface development, no access and authentication to manage, no computational resource allocation, no new documentation, no quality assurance, no support desk, and no roadmap for upgrades.
While some offerings may involve the installation and configuration of software onto workstations, others require nothing more than an Internet browser and a password. Some tools and applications don’t even require the latter. The greatest challenge to implementation is choosing which clouds to access.
We are committed to providing you with the most flexible and powerful quantum computing solutions. Our Premium Cloud-Based access plans are designed to offer you prompt, secure, and dependable access to our industry-leading 256-qubit neutral-atom quantum computer and world-class team, regardless of your geographical location. We offer: