by Nandita Bhardwaj
Multinational tech major Microsoft has recently announced the rollout of its cloud-based platform Azure Quantum, which is designed for utilizing quantum software and hardware and tools from partners such as 1Qbit, IonQ, Honeywell Quantum Solutions, and others, in public preview. Reportedly, last May, Azure Quantum had entered the limited preview when it was open only to few selected partners and customers of the company. But now anyone interested in quantum computing could begin experimenting with the Microsoft service.
It has been reported that this service provides a free allowance that gets uses started. Post that, using the services can get expensive quickly. As these are still initial days for quantum computing, building on a specific platform, whether it is of Microsoft or that of its rivals such as Rigetti and IBM, means investing in a specific toolset as well. In case of Microsoft, it is the Q# language and its open-source QDK (Quantum Development Kit) along with its recently launched LLVM based intermediate language, QIR (Quantum Intermediate Representation).
Commenting on the technology, Krysta Svore, GM of Microsoft Quantum has stated that the progression of Azure Quantum in Public Preview is a major milestone in quantum computing and the company’s ecosystem. This continues to be a major impetus that the company witnessed last year, that comprises of addition of new partners for Azure Quantum, selection in National Quantum Initiative Quantum Research Centers, as well as hardware advances to scale the control circuitry for the qubits, Svore added.
According to the sources of knowledge, although Microsoft’s initiatives for building a quantum computer have not yet resulted in a working qubit, the company has made great strides across other areas. At the moment, Microsoft is banking on partnerships with several other players within the space for powering up this platform. This will apparently enable the company to strengthen its claims of offering the first ever full-stack and cloud-based public ecosystem for quantum solutions.
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