What just happened? Honeywell expects to release the most powerful quantum computer to date – one with a quantum volume of at least 64 – by the middle of 2020, or within the next three months. According to the company, its new system will have twice the quantum volume of the next alternative in the industry.

Not simply a measure of qubits, quantum volume additionally considers the connectivity and low error rate of qubits.

Honeywell said it has a team of more than 100 engineers, scientists and software developers working on its quantum computer. It anticipates increasing its quantum volume by an order of magnitude each year for at least the next five years.

The company first announced its quantum computing efforts in 2018 but had been laying the foundation for a decade prior. Late last year, the conglomerate announced a partnership with Microsoft to provide access to its quantum computer through Microsoft Azure Quantum services.

Honeywell on Tuesday also announced a collaboration with JPMorgan Chase to develop quantum algorithms using its new computer. Furthermore, the company’s venture capital arm, Honeywell Ventures, is investing in quantum software and algorithm providers Zapata Computing and Cambridge Quantum Computing.

For all of the recent advancements in quantum computing, researchers have still only scratched the surface in their understanding of the peculiar machines and their odd behavior. And not everyone is convinced of their potential.

Physicist Michel Dyakonov from the Université Montpellier in France told CNET late last year that he doesn’t believe quantum computers will ever become practical. “The quest for 'supremacy' is somewhat artificial and belongs more to the hype than to science. Just show us an elementary quantum calculator that can do three times five or three plus five.”

Masthead credit: Quantum abstract by plotplot.