List of AI photonics companies

1 minute read

Last updated Dec 26, 2020. N = 8 (+4) companies.

I have spent some time looking in to companies that are trying to build computer chips that using photonics. That is, chips that use at least some light in addition to electricity. Nominally these companies pitch their chips for AI uses, though I think many of these companies are pursuing chips that would be useful more general computation, as well. Note that I am not including companies making optical transceivers. (These are devices the don’t do general computation, but convert between electric signals and optical signals. This is how, for instance, internet data can be transmitted on fiber optic cables but interface with computers, which use electric signal.) I don’t know much about this area, so I will just leave the companies in alphabetical order, but I’ll separate startups from established companies. I got the names of several of these companies from James Wang’s twitter account

Established Companies

Startups

Quantum Computing Companies

There are also four companies that I know of that are pursuing photonics as a route for quantum computing, that is in turn advertised as an AI chip. I’m separating these out from the other photonics companies because they are trying to do fundamentally different computations, and are not in direct competition with the companies above. These companies are: