"Using benchmark problems that are both challenging and relevant to real-world applications, the D-Wave 2000Q system outperformed highly specialized algorithms run on state-of-the-art classical servers by factors of 1,000 to 10,000 times," the press release says. Said benchmarks even included machine learning applications -- which could prove to be the most consumer-facing application for the machines. A group of scientists is also looking at the machine for solving how planetary rovers can manage time and schedules autonomously.As Nature notes
, however, these systems work great with problems designed to run on them. Anything not tailored to the systems' strengths can be another matter entirely. "So although scientists now agree that D-Wave devices do use quantum phenomena in their calculations," the journal writes, "some doubt that they can ever be used to solve real-world problems exponentially faster than classical computers -- however many qubits are clubbed together, and whatever their configuration."
D-Wave isn't stopping with the D-2000Q, of course, with SVP of Systems Jeremy Hilton saying that the next machine would once again follow the path of doubling performance and making easier-to-use and more efficient software.