Challenge FeelM, ANYX Shines with SENSIT Technology at InterTabac Germany

InterTabac, renowned as the premier professional exhibition for the tobacco and smoking accessories industry in Europe and worldwide, has always been a significant gathering for global tobacco companies and institutions. After three years of subdued activity due to the pandemic, this year marked a resurgence, drawing nearly 700 traditional tobacco, new-age tobacco, and supply chain brands and enterprises, including 150 exhibitors specializing in electronic cigarettes. Especially for the disposable electronic cigarette sector, which has seen significant growth in recent years, the market dynamics have shifted, bringing forth new challenges and opportunities. This exhibition provides a glimpse into the future of the European market.

A Brief History of Closed-Pod-System Vapes: Cotton Coil vs. Ceramic Coil
In the realm of electronic vaporization, groundbreaking technological innovation stemmed from the nicotine salt technology pioneered by PAX Labs, a subsidiary of JUUL. Its creator, Xing Chenyue, ushered in the era of closed-system e-cigarettes that posed a challenge to traditional tobacco in 2015, becoming a pivotal moment in the electronic vaporization industry.

Entering this “new era,” JUUL swiftly dominated the U.S. market with its technological and product advantages, leading to a proliferation of pod-based e-cigarette devices. However, its aggressive marketing and diverse flavors inadvertently set the stage for what later became known as the “youth vaping crisis.” Meanwhile, on the other side of the world, a Chinese electronic vaporization technology company, FEELM International, was developing a groundbreaking technology known as ceramic atomization coils, which later became the renowned FEELM brand. Subsequently, numerous electronic cigarette technology manufacturers embarked on the development of ceramic coils.

The invention of ceramic coils addressed issues such as cotton wicking, flavor degradation, and harsh throat hits on the consumer end, while demonstrating its true prowess on the business end through standardization, high-quality production, consistency, and large-scale mechanical manufacturing. These factors provided a solid foundation for brands to swiftly establish themselves in the retail market. Particularly after JUUL faced stringent regulatory measures in the U.S. market, ceramic atomization coils became the mainstream solution for closed-system pod-based e-cigarettes, propelling FEELM to unprecedented success.

However, the market is never static, especially in the electronic cigarette industry, where product forms are constantly evolving amidst regulatory challenges and compromises. This time, the spotlight turned to another faction within the closed-system sector: disposable products. Thanks to restrictions on flavors for pod-based e-cigarettes in the United States, savvy businesses redirected their focus toward the gray areas of regulation, capitalizing on the market void left by flavored disposable e-cigarettes. Compared to pod-based e-cigarettes, disposable e-cigarettes offer a wider variety of flavors, greater affordability and convenience, and a plethora of form factors. They rapidly captured the market share vacated due to flavor restrictions in the United States and expanded globally, becoming a driving force in the global electronic cigarette market’s rapid growth over the past few years.

It’s worth noting that in this rapidly expanding incremental market, the low technical barrier of entry provided numerous opportunities for small and microbrands. Many brands expanded rapidly in a short period, while some major electronic cigarette manufacturers, accustomed to controlling quality and standardization, struggled to adapt to the high turnover and dynamic nature of the disposable e-cigarette market, missing out on further expansion opportunities. Brands with rapid iteration, low management and production costs stood out in this competitive landscape, and it seems that most disposable manufacturers have reached a consensus – the use of cotton wicking. The resurgence of cotton coils reaffirms their superiority in terms of user experience on the consumer end, which ceramic coils cannot fully replace.

Exhibition Insights into Market Shifts: Can SENSIT Become the Mainstream in Atomization Technology?
In response to various issues in the disposable e-cigarette market, such as smuggling, environmental damage, and accessibility to youth, this exhibition also announced the formation of a new Global Electronic Cigarette Alliance. Its goal is to promote close cooperation within the industry, shoulder industry responsibilities, and rectify the electronic vaporization market.

From a market perspective, according to data from the European Union’s statistical agency, Eurostat, the import value of electronic cigarettes into Germany approached €1 billion in 2022. According to data from the General Administration of Customs of China, in July 2023, China exported approximately $69.36 million worth of electronic cigarettes to Germany. Although this represented a 20.95% month-on-month decrease, it marked a 138.75% year-on-year increase. Furthermore, the Smoke-Free Tobacco Enjoyment Alliance (BfTG) in Germany reported that the market share of disposable e-cigarettes in the German electronic cigarette market had dropped to 30%, a 10-percentage point decrease from 2022. While disposable e-cigarettes still remain a dominant product, reusable variants are becoming increasingly popular, accounting for 15% of the market share.

From market trends, it can be inferred that pod-based products are quietly experiencing a resurgence. However, the question remains: Will users accustomed to cotton coils be open to pod-based products with ceramic coils?

The main pod-based e-cigarette brands showcased at this exhibition include VUSE, RELX, and the emerging brand ANYX. What sets ANYX apart from the first two is its utilization of SENSIT cotton coil technology instead of FEELM‘s ceramic coils. During the exhibition, ANYX’s products, including ANYX Pro and ANYX Max, received widespread attention from attendees who had the opportunity to try them. Apart from the advantages of a fuller vapor and higher flavor fidelity that cotton coils inherently offer, SENSIT also introduced an innovative oil-coil separation structure. The oil chamber remains completely sealed until use, effectively preventing leaks and safeguarding against oil volatility, flavor deterioration, and accidental oil spills during long-distance transportation and extended storage.

Additionally, SENSIT features characteristics such as adaptive airflow resistance, stable conductivity, oil unloading through pressure relief, and strong oil retention capabilities. To enhance the user’s inhalation experience, an ingenious pneumatic switch was incorporated into the air intake pathway, ensuring resistance during light inhalations and smoothness during deep ones. In the pathway structure for exhaling vapor, Sensit reinforced airflow control to prevent vapor blockages. These attributes perfectly complement the development of the world’s first truly dual-power, lightweight lung-inhaling pod-based vaporizer by ANYX Pro, earning high praise from attendees during the exhibition.

In recent years, innovation in the electronic vaporization market has been scarce. Perhaps the reshuffling of the disposable e-cigarette market will not only pave the way for new technologies to fill market gaps but also lead to the emergence of a new landscape in pod-based e-cigarettes. Whether SENSIT can challenge the dominant position of FEELM’s ceramic coils as the coil choice for vaporization technology remains a topic of great interest and anticipation in the market.


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