New research of UK business decision makers has revealed that 55 per cent of companies think that quantum computing – a type of computing that uses quantum mechanics so that it can perform certain types of computation more efficiently than a regular computer – is an overhyped technology.
But this scepticism has not deterred organisations’ enthusiasm for the technology, as 91 per cent think it is important for the UK to be a leading nation in quantum computing technology.
The data commissioned by KPMG UK and conducted by OnePoll showed that businesses are making considerable strides in quantum, with a quarter saying they already have quantum computing projects in place, a third having either an internal team or external advisors looking into how they can use the technology.
31 per cent of organisations discussing how they will leverage the technology in the future. A mere nine per cent aren’t thinking at all about how they can take advantage of quantum, though this was significantly higher in the Utility (29 per cent) and Hospitality (24 per cent) sectors.
However, when asked about apprehensions to using the technology, regulation came up again as a key concern, closely followed by security issues.
Commenting on the findings Ian West, Head of TMT KPMG UK said: “To compete as a global economy the UK must be at the forefront of innovation, so it is troubling to see business leaders anxious about regulatory barriers potentially holding back development in quantum technologies. And while it is great to see British companies making headway in this area – even if they are still in the early planning stages – they cannot not let their concerns get in the way of progress.”
In terms of what is holding organisations back from driving more resources into quantum, limited budget (46 per cent) and the digital skills gap (45 per cent) came out top. The fact that quantum it is still nascent technology with ambiguity around its return on investment (40 per cent) was another contributing factor.
A further 23 per cent of companies don’t understand the opportunities that this tech presents, which is vital when making decisions about R&D resources. Promisingly, seven per cent say nothing is standing in their way of increasing investment in the technology.
West added: “While businesses are committing considerable time and money to their quantum projects, the data hints at their trepidation. I engage with countless organisations who are unsure of the how best to take advantage of this emerging technology and question if it is even worth the investment. But it is important for business leaders to educate themselves on how it can be applied for specific use cases, so they can take advantage of the exciting opportunities it presents.”