Just 20 years into the 21st century, we have already seen remarkable changes that we could never have anticipated. We've come up with 20 predictions that explore what the next 20 years may have in store for your organization.

Two decades from now, a quantum leap in quantum computers will solve large and complex problems with unprecedented speed and scale. By analyzing enormous amounts of data, variables and outcomes, quantum computers will be a game changer for businesses by improving efficiencies and lowering costs, in healthcare by saving lives, and in protecting the environment by predicting the cause and mitigation measures for extreme climate events.

Quantum computing will help us solve our most difficult problems

With dramatically improved weather and climate modelling, quantum computing will transform agriculture to better feed our planet and protect the environment. We will detect natural disasters and further our understanding of climate change, which will allow us to save lives and be better stewards of the environment and wildlife.

In healthcare, quantum computing will assist in drug discovery and help create life-saving medicines. It will also dramatically improve fraud detection and portfolio risk optimization in financial services. The ability for a quantum computer to analyze unprecedented amounts of data across many variables makes it ideal for logistical, supply chain and optimization problems, such as those faced by e-commerce giants and ride-sharing apps.

Two decades from now, most quantum computing will be in the cloud (with Microsoft Quantum and partnerships already educating developers about the different programming techniques needed for quantum applications1). We'll see the emergence of quantum-as-a-service providers, allowing organizations to reap the benefits of quantum without a heavy capital investment.

The power of quantum computing will spur us to solve over the new couple of decades its current technical and security challenges. We will develop quantum computing standards, so we have the technical consistency required to accelerate its development and underpin economies of scale. We will have innovative storage solutions for fragile quantum bits, or qbits, and, while quantum encryption itself in inherently secure and 'unhackable', we will develop safeguards against new forms of quantum attacks in the future.

1 The future of quantum computing in the cloud, TechTarget, April 17, 2020

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Trends, breakthroughs, milestones, and insights on our path towards quantum computing.

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