A brand new product from industry giant British American Tobacco (BAT) has become the first of its kind to be licensed as a medicine in the UK.
The Voke inhaler offers a rival to the popular electronic cigarette, as it delivers a precise dose of nicotine, yet involves no heat, electronics or batteries. Licensed as a medicinal product by the Medicines and Heathcare Regulatory Agency, the new device could be prescribed by doctors as a smoking cessation aid says reuters.com.
BAT, the world's second biggest cigarette maker already boasts the Vype e-cigarette, but industry experts expect the new Voke to be available for sale from early next year. Before it can be made available to the public a newer version suitable for mass production will need to also meet MHRA approval, describes independant.co.uk.
Private company Kind Consumer have been working alongside BAT to develop this innovative new product, since signing a deal with their subsidiary Nicoventures in 2010. The new device is cigarette sized and comes in a box the size of a regular pack of 20 cigarettes.
Unlike e-cigarettes, the Voke does not produce a vapour, instead using a breath-operated valve to deliver the nicotine. This comes at a key time, following the recent media attention surrounding unproven concerns of smoking e-cigs in public places.
Critics have noted, though, that it's currently unclear how popular BAT's new product will be with consumers, as many enjoy the similarity of e-cigs compared to their traditional counterparts, and the vapourless Voke will offer a completely different experience.