JUUL is on top of the vaping world because their best-selling e-cigarette holds over 70% of the e-cig market share and is valued at $15 billion. However, they’re not content with standing still, they’ve already gone global, launching the JUUL in the UK and in Israel. They are also on the verge of releasing JUUL pods in lower nicotine strengths. Heck, they’re not even afraid to take on big tobacco. Despite their unquestionable success, JUUL is currently mired in controversy because of the fact that many teenagers are using their e-cigarette.
Many of the changes they are making seem to be about addressing this controversy, including their plans for a new Bluetooth enabled JUUL. That’s not the only proposed reason for those plans, but that reason will always be in the back of everyone’s mind when JUUL announces a new feature. Keep reading to find out all the big changes JUUL is making and how they might affect you.
How JUUL Is Responding To The Teenage Vaping Problem
The same reasons that make the JUUL popular among adults—the ease of use and the flavor variety—are the same things that make it popular among teenagers. The result is that concerned citizens have laid the blame for the teenage vaping phenomenon at JUUL’s door. One can argue whether JUUL is truly responsible for this problem, but regardless of who is at fault, JUUL has taken several measures to get their e-cigarette out of teenager’s hands.
JUUL has pledged to spend $30 million to help reduce under-age use of their e-cig. This money will fund research to help understand, and prevent, underage vaping. JUUL is also employing secret shoppers to ferret out who is selling their e-cigarette to teenagers. They are also supporting the push to increase the age limit of tobacco buyers.
Their announcement of lower strength JUUL pods could also be seen as a way of trying to limit the harm that nicotine could do to a developing teenage brain. No matter how you view JUUL’s culpability in the teenage vaping problem, they are serious about reducing, if not completely eliminating, underage use of its product and mitigating the damage it could cause to those underage users.
JUUL has also decided not to carry on with the rollout of 55 new flavors that would have included varieties like strawberry limoncello, mimosa, and spicy watermelon. Even though these 55 flavors have been registered with the FDA, JUUL has elected not to release them, no doubt because of the perception that they are intentionally creating flavors that will appeal to teenagers. JUUL has maintained the position that the exotic flavors are to help wean smokers off of tobacco flavors, rather than to make the JUUL more kid-friendly.
The Safety Applications Of A Bluetooth JUUL
According to Bloomberg, the Bluetooth enabled JUUL is set to launch only in the markets to which it has recently expanded, namely Israel and Western Europe, it is unknown whether they plan on eventually bringing this new JUUL to North America. Nonetheless, this is another big change that the company is using—at least, in part—to help combat teenage vaping.
That is because one of the applications of the new Bluetooth JUUL is that it can verify the age of the person using it. It is currently unknown how the device will do this, but if the technology works, it could go a long way to reducing underage vaping.
Another possible way the Bluetooth JUUL could help combat this problem is by setting up a virtual geofence around schools and other areas where vaping is not, or should not be, permitted. The JUUL will automatically shut off as the user approaches one of those areas, or will not activate if they are already in one of those areas. This is a good idea, but one that could be hard to implement without annoying vapers who are just passing by the school instead of trying to enter it.
Other Possible Applications Of The Bluetooth JUUL
Another reported use of the Bluetooth JUUL is monitoring the nicotine intake of former smokers. This could possibly work in conjunction with the new JUUL pods with lower nicotine levels that are set to launch in August 2018. Another reported change includes controlling the flavor strength of the JUUL.
Possible Drawbacks of a Bluetooth Enabled JUUL
Data collection, and its misuse, has been in the news lately, and a Bluetooth enabled JUUL has the potential to collect a lot of useful information on the vaping frequency and habits of various demographics. In fact, JUUL has filed a patent for features like collecting data on the user’s preferred temperature setting and their socioeconomic status. This is information that could be highly valuable when it comes to marketing and advertising.
A JUUL app could use that data to recommend new flavors, offer deals, and connect users with similar vaping habits. As with other forms of targeted advertising, some vapers may like the extra personalisation, while others may balk at the invasion of privacy. So far, JUUL has reassured the vaping public that it has no plans to bring those patents to fruition, and that they were only written to protect its intellectual property.
How Will a Bluetooth JUUL Affect The Company’s Dominance?
A JUUL with Bluetooth technology is a big deal because JUUL has never made any serious hardware changes to the JUUL, until now, they have mostly focused on new flavors and new colors. It is unknown how many of these changes will work, or if JUUL will be able to launch the new JUUL without any serious bugs accompanying its release.
With these changes, the Bluetooth JUUL could become one of the most advanced e-cigarettes on the market. One of the main reasons for the success of the regular JUUL is its simplicity. Could a JUUL with Bluetooth technology add too much complexity to the JUUL, thus eliminating one of its most appealing features? It’s too early to say, but I wouldn’t bet against JUUL, and no matter what happens, the classic JUUL will always be there in all of its glory.