The experiment confirmed that quantum communication is feasible over long distances in fiber. Other research groups have teleported quantum information over longer distances in free space, but the ability to do so over conventional fiber-optic lines offers more flexibility for network design. The experiment used photons to transfer the information.
A photon is a single particle of light. It is an elementary particle that exhibits both particle and wave properties; wave–particle duality. The study of photons usually falls under but not limited to quantum mechanics.
Photons have many real world applications. Solar energy cells use photons to convert sunlight to energy. Some systems like the Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography (SPECT) use it to generate images. The mass of photons was one of the factors that lead researchers at CERN in the Large Hadron Collider to help discover the Higgs Particle. Even in science fiction, the photon torpedo or photon gun is part of a spaceship's arsenal.