The year ahead
Posted on 27 January 2017 by Euan McGlade.
We asked JAC Vapour Product Design Engineer, Euan McGlade, for his thoughts on what 2017 might mean for vaping.
2017 will be an interesting year for the e-cigarette industry, and for JAC Vapour. With the TPD being fully implemented in May, I think we'll begin to see a much slower release cycle for products throughout the year, due to the 6 month notification period. Companies will have to submit new products to the regulatory body 6 months before they can put them out to market. This will mainly affect tanks, all in one devices and starter kits, so mods, batteries and so on won't really change too much.
In terms of what lies ahead for new products and new technology, I think simplicity is going to be key, especially in the mainstream market of cigalikes, eGo style devices and low powered box mods.
We have already seen the pod mod begin to trickle into the market this year. This is a very simple device, which consists of a battery and a pre-filled cartridge. The 510 connector is out the window, and in comes a simple push-fit connection unique to that style of device. At the moment, I'd say that performance and battery life in these pod mods is similar to that of a cigalike device, but this will only get better over time as the design is implemented into eGo style devices and box mods.
I think the pod mod is inevitably the direction in which current ego devices and box mods will begin to go. For instance, we may see that tanks are dropped from these lower powered devices and options of standard and sub-ohm pods become the alternatives. We may also see that the all in one type device becomes more relevant as a step up to the pod mod.
Aesthetics and form will begin to become more important as well, and e-cigs will start to lose their traditional cylindrical and box mod shapes. The fact that the pod mod and all in one units have a “tank section” incorporated into the “battery section” of the device means designers have much more freedom over how they want their product to look and feel.
Devices will become more ergonomic, with more organic shapes and lines starting come through, lending them a much more modern and sleek look. Losing the tank will also help make devices smaller, with a more solid appearance.
The advanced market is tougher to call. As the TPD has restricted tank capacity down to 2ml, it means that sub-ohm/high wattage users will be refilling their tanks a lot more often, which may start to become a pain. This may mean that high powered device innovation slows, or we may see an increase in tanks using secondary reservoirs, such as squonk boxes, to get around the restrictions.
That being said, the advanced market is where new e-cigarette technology really develops, and later is refined and trickled down into the more mainstream market. Already you can see box mods gaining more aids to make the device easier to use.
As developments in battery technology are historically very slow to reach the e-cigarette market, I don't expect to see too much movement in terms of the highest power devices.
I think the real advancement will be in PCB technology, taking the form of greater efficiency in battery and coil usage, temperature control being refined further and integrated into more mainstream devices.
User customisation may also be a route we see PCB manufacturers go down as well. With the constant increase in smart technology, we may see devices being able to sync up with apps letting users customise their device to suit them.
Simple things, like tracking usage and nicotine intake, to more advanced features such as power curve control or fault diagnostics may all be controlled from your phone in future, making screens and buttons on devices irrelevant. This has already been trialled in certain devices, but has yet to catch on in any meaningful way.