IBM said it should offer a way to move large amounts of information between processors in computer servers at higher speeds than at present.
These provide computing power and data used by apps and other net services.
The team behind the development said that using light, rather than the flow of electrons, to transmit data has two key advantages, the BBC reports.
Firstly, the data can be sent further distances between different parts of a server centre without the risk of losing information, the report said.
Secondly, data transfer speeds are faster as light can be used to carry more information at once through cables, it added.
According to the report, the firm will present the details of the development at the International Electron Devices Meeting in San Francisco later.