Milestone Experiment Proves Quantum Communication Really Is Faster

Quantum computers are still a dream, but the era of quantum communication is here. A new experiment out of Paris has demonstrated, for the first time, that quantum communication is superior to classical ways of transmitting information.

“We are the first to show a quantum advantage for transmitted information that two parties have to share to perform a useful task,” said Eleni Diamanti, an electrical engineer at Sorbonne University and a co-author of the result along with Iordanis Kerenidis, a computer scientist at Paris Diderot University, and Niraj Kumar.

Quantum machines — which exploit quantum properties of matter to encode information — are widely expected to revolutionize computing. But progress has been slow. While engineers labor to build rudimentary quantum computers, theoretical computer scientists have confronted a more fundamental obstacle: They’ve been unable to prove that classical computers will never be able to perform the tasks quantum computers are designed for. This past summer, for example, a teenager from Texas proved that a problem long thought to be quickly solvable only on a quantum computer can be done rapidly on a classical computer as well.

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