Written on: 13/02/2013
Instead of buying a 10-pack one morning, I grabbed one of the E-Lite starter kits, eight quid for for an electronic cig with the claim that it lasts "30 'Cigarettes' Approx". I haven't felt the urge to smoke while using it, so no complaints there, but on almost every other level it has failed.
I'm a light smoker, around 5 cigarettes a day, and I'd barely had the E-Lite for 24 hours before two things started happening. First, the vapour output started trailing off drastically. Then, the battery led began to flash to indicate a battery needing a recharge. So for the equivalent of a time period what would normally costs me £1.50 to £2.00, I have spent £7.99. Is also isn't very reassuring when a battery, that I would assume to come fully charged, packs in after 5 to 7 cigarettes. Unless, of course, they deliberately charge them just enough to last through one of the tips to encourage you to scurry off in search of a charger. That's the cyncical reading, one I don't think is too unreasonable given the performance of the technology I bought.
The other problem is that it is nothing like smoking. Like I said, I'm a light smoker: I can usually handle a good 24 hours before getting cranky, but where I fail completely is in my craving for what I've come to learn is called a throat hit. I get conmfort from the the feeling of smoke going down my throat, in the same way a baby enjoys sucking a blanket. Silly, yeah - but these E-Lites don't satisfy that at all. I must admit there were probably 3 or 4 draws out of the small number I managed to get out of the device that 'did it', but the contrapception wasn't particularly consistent even when I'd learned how and when to draw. I got by easily enough (like I said, I haven't felt the urge to smoke), but it feels a bit like giving up coffee by proxy of stopping taking fluids into your mouth - sometimes a drink is just nice, whether or not it has caffine in it.
In short - too expensive (around 4 times too expensive for my tastes) and not quite offering the full replacement cigarette experience. By all means try them (they've opened my eyes to the fact that electronic cigarettes can be a viable alternative), just don't tie yourself down to them.