In brief

  • The quantum cryptography solutions market is poised to grow by $2.71 billion in 2020–2024.
  • The advantage of quantum key distribution could make classic cryptography obsolete.
  • The emergence of new solutions will likely boost the market even further.

The quantum cryptography solutions market will likely grow by $2.71 billion during the next four years, with a compound annual growth rate of 39%, according to market intelligence solutions firm Infiniti Research.

Quantum cryptography is a science focused on leveraging quantum mechanics to perform cryptographic tasks. Quantum mechanics is an innovative means of computing that has the ability to create more computing power on an order of magnitude greater than a traditional computer, while cryptography is the art of using complicated math to encrypt data.

It can provide greater levels of privacy. If data is encoded in a quantum state, it is impossible to copy it due to the laws of quantum mechanics.

According to Infiniti’s research, the quantum cryptography market will grow exponentially thanks to the un-hackability of photons assured by laws of quantum mechanics, possible obsolescence of traditional encryption, and the ability to download the information to be decrypted later.

Another driving force behind the quantum cryptography market growth is the emergence of quantum key distribution (QKD) solutions, researchers noted.

QKD is one of the most well-known applications of quantum cryptography that uses quantum communication to establish a shared key between two entities without any third parties learning anything about it. In this way, anyone who even tries to learn about the key will create discrepancies, alerting the key holders.

IBM's quantum computer on show at CeBIT 2018. Image: Shutterstock.

A key established via QKD is most commonly used for encrypted communication using classical techniques. Moreover, the security of such quantum keys can be mathematically proven—unlike traditional key distribution.

In the past, one of the main restrictions of the QKD was the transmission distance and key generation rate limit. But new research can potentially help overcome this "rate-distance limit," further boosting the quantum cryptography market growth, Infiniti Research added.

As Decrypt reported last December, quantum cryptography could significantly boost the blockchain industry, according to research firm TechNavio. In their turn, several blockchain startups are already preparing for the quantum future.

Quantum computing is a threat to current standards of encryption. A sufficiently powerful quantum computer could crack the encryption that keeps Bitcoin secure, opening the door for everyone’s Bitcoin to be stolen. However, when quantum computing becomes that strong, quantum cryptography can be used to keep Bitcoin safe.