The advent of the quantum Internet, a revolutionary communication system utilising quantum mechanical principles and qubits instead of binary bits, is poised to redefine global connectivity with unprecedented levels of security and performance, according to GlobalData, and has the potential to transform many industries – including telecommunications, cybersecurity, and computing.

“Driven by the imperative for secure, high-speed data transmission, the quantum Internet promises to address critical challenges across multiple industries,” says Kiran Raj, practice head of Disruptive Tech at GlobalData. “In telecommunications, for instance, it mitigates latency and expands bandwidth, alleviating significant bottlenecks.

“Meanwhile, in cybersecurity, it introduces unbreakable encryption methods like quantum key distribution (QKD) to safeguard sensitive information. In computing, it unlocks revolutionary quantum algorithms, amplifying computational power and efficiency, particularly in cryptography, optimisation, and complex simulations. In a nutshell, quantum Internet will emerge as the lynchpin for future industry advancements.”

Saurabh Daga, project manager of Disruptive Tech at GlobalData, adds: “Although quantum Internet has predominantly existed as an experimental concept, recent technical breakthroughs by researchers – alongside concurrent advancements in quantum computing – are solidifying its path towards full practical realisation and eventual commercialisation.

“These advancements emphasise a significant move towards integrating the quantum Internet into tangible applications, marking a significant milestone in its journey from theory to reality.”

The Innovation Explorer database of GlobalData’s Disruptor Intelligence Centre highlights how the potential of quantum Internet is further demonstrated by various company developments, including:

* Aliro Quantum’s AliroNet solution: American startup Aliro Quantum has launched AliroNet, a full-stack entanglement-based quantum network solution. AliroNet emulates quantum networks, conducts small-scale pilots, and deploys full-scale networks transforming sectors like government, defence, finance, research, and environmental sciences with secure communications and distributed quantum sensing.

* Cisco’s Project Lyra: Cisco and UK-based Nu Quantum are collaborating on Lyra, supported by UK Research and Innovation, to develop modular quantum network infrastructure for a prototype quantum data centre. By integrating quantum technology with conventional networking, they aim to create scalable data centres, advancing future networking technologies for Cisco.

* QphoX’s quantum modem technology: Dutch startup QphoX has developed a quantum modem to scale quantum computers and establish a quantum Internet. This technology enables secure, efficient data transmission over long distances by translating quantum information between microwave and optical domains, driving interconnected quantum systems.

* EPB’s quantum infrastructure: The Electric Power Board of Chattanooga (EPB) and Qubitekk have launched a commercial quantum network combining EPB’s broadband expertise with Qubitekk’s quantum encryption technology. This enables secure, high-speed communication for finance, healthcare, and government applications.

“However, challenges remain in scaling quantum networks and ensuring compatibility with existing systems,” says Daga. “Overcoming these obstacles is crucial for fully leveraging the benefits of the quantum Internet. As the technology matures, collaboration between industry and academic partners will be key to deploying quantum Internet infrastructure globally, accelerating innovation, and driving economic growth.”