IBM’s …Road to Commercial Quantum Computing
The IT industry loves to talk-up cool new technologies. Though impressive, it’s typically half an exercise in PR and half self-referential backslapping. What is less discussed is the careful process and considerable effort required to bring those products and services successfully to market.
It isn’t just a matter of beating the bushes for willing clients. That’s especially true in the case of unique technologies for which no appreciable market exists. You also have to engage able, energetic partners, and work to educate potential customers.
Consider the iPhone which recently celebrated the 10th anniversary of its launch. What Apple has chosen to remember and highlight includes the legendary vision and P.T. Barnum-class promotional genius of its then-CEO Steve Jobs and its own remarkable skills in product and GUI design. What has arguably received less than its due are the efforts the company’s partners played in ensuring that success.
Those include AT&T, the iPhone’s initial exclusive mobile carrier which did a decent job of dialing-up network capacity to feed growing bandwidth demands. More important, though, were the developers who populated the Apple Store with thousands and eventually millions of apps and services that helped define the iPhone and expand its capabilities.
Their value certainly wasn’t lost on Google which made developer outreach central to its efforts around Android. That effectively stuck a stick into Apple’s spokes and made the smart phone market far more competitive and profitable than it would have been otherwise.
The essential value of partner and developer efforts also cast light on the Q Network announced by IBM last week, and the role it is likely to play in the evolution and adoption of the company’s IBM Q quantum computing platform.
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NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT Review.