VAPORESSO is back with a new device unlike any other. The COSS is a stick pod vape equipped with a pass-thru power bank that can be electronically activated to refill the pod. Effectively, you can charge, fill, and vape, all within the same unit. What kind of sorcery is this?
Although the COSS is a multi-part system, in reality, it’s a simple interface designed for beginners. The COSS consists of a refillable stick pod vape (COSS Stick; 250 mAh; 0.6 mL), a haptic-feedback power bank (COSS Hub; 1500 mAh; USB-C charge), a refill capsule (COSS Capsule; 7.5 mL), and two refillable pods (one 1.2-ohm mesh and a cigarette-filter style pod.) The device can be used as one unit or just as a stick vape that can be charged and refilled via the COSS Hub.
There’s a lot to unpack with this one. VAPORESSO is calling the COSS a “breakthrough.” I’d agree with that, though I’d call it groundbreaking! However, the most innovatively engineered vape still has to meet the basic performance test. The COSS costs $100, so there’s a lot to live up to here. Let’s see how the COSS holds up.
Price: $106.73 (at VAPORESSO)
Colors: Black, sierra blue, midnight green, viva red, space gray
The VAPORESSO COSS is a vape system that’s easy to learn and fun to experience. By now, we all know that VAPORESSO is a vape engineering juggernaut. In my opinion, the COSS is the best example of their capabilities. It’s an ambitious attempt at addressing the pain points of vaping, namely charging and refilling. If there was any vape company to tackle such a project, it would be VAPORESSO.
The COSS looks like a more sophisticated tech gadget than a vape. As mentioned, the COSS Stick can be used by itself once filled inside the Hub (more on that later.) It’s a tiny stick vape (17 mm x 9 mm x 93.5 mm) that’s shorter than the JUUL but slightly thicker. It’s made of what appears to be brushed aluminum with a metallic finish.
As a self-contained unit, when the COSS Stick is in the Hub, it’s heavy but comfortable. The exterior has all rounded edges, and though the looks of the Stick and Hub match, the finish of the Hub has a micro-layer of rubberized coating—offsetting the weight by making it easy to hold. The whole unit weighs 193.5 grams. For comparison, my VAPORESSO TARGET 100 plus with an iTank only weighs 10 grams more.
The 7.5 mL capacity COSS Hub (the refilling pod) is translucent, making it easy to see when it needs to be refilled, and the Stick’s pods are transparent, making them easy to see where to fill to. Those elements, plus a simple battery meter-style row of indicator lights, add to its user-friendliness.
The only slight con with the build quality and design is that there’s a little rattle when the Stick is in the Hub. But the Stick is totally secure in there by way of magnets and a track-and-catch system.
This is a good point to explain how to get started—right where the COSS becomes unlike any other vape you’ve ever used.
COSS is an acronym, standing for “convenient operating, smart supplying.”
The COSS has a design, and name, similar to the IQOS by Altria. The Hub with its charging capabilities is directly inspired by the IQOS, and especially when used with the cigarette-style cotton filters, the COSS Stick resembles a heat-not-burn device. But the similarities end there—COSS is strictly a vape juice device.
Before getting started, decide which COSS Pod you want to use. There’s one that has a regular mouthpiece tip and another that is to be used with the cigarette-style filters in the kit (both housing 1.2-ohm mesh coils.)
An important point before beginning is that you do NOT fill the COSS Stick pod in a traditional way. This is how you begin:
NOTE: the device must remain upright during this process. And do NOT fill past the max line or it will overflow out of the pod tip, down into the Stick chute, making a mess.
That may seem like a lot, but it’s really all a simple process once you’ve done it once. The filling process sounds are faint enough that you have to pay attention to notice them. You shouldn’t remove the Stick while it’s filling, although I didn’t notice any leaks when I did it.
The important usage note that I must reiterate is to not overfill the pod past the max line. It takes about 2 or 3 refilling cycles to fill up to max, but I recommend stopping shy. There’s no need to take it to the max since more liquid can be added with the press of a button.
The pods don’t hold much liquid, and the Stick doesn’t have much battery life, so I recommend keeping it close to the Hub. A good place for it is to remain inside the Hub when not in use.
This is where the proverbial rubber meets the road. For all the ingenuity of the COSS, the vape performance is only slightly above average. The pods generate a warm and tight MTL draw with a nice throat hit (if you use high nic), but they’re not particularly noteworthy in terms of flavor performance or longevity. They’re decent at best. I’ve been able to run about 10 mL through each pod before the flavor diminishes and starts tasting off.
As for the performance of the device’s functions, I think it’s solid. The refilling from the Capsule isn’t super-fast, but the convenience factor makes up for it. It’s only 60 seconds. It’s hard to quibble with an electronically activated, self-contained refilling hub that only takes a minute. Not as fast as squonking, but light years ahead from a tech perspective.
While I do regard the COSS as having a solid performance across the board, I do wish for better performance from the pods, and I foresee some issues with users overfilling the device.
For it to be as advanced as it is, I wish there was a sensor that prevented overfilling. If it’s overfilled, the pod will probably be ruined (since there’s no way to remove the juice), and liquid is going to get into the Stick’s pod housing and inside the chute of the Hub. I don’t think that would break the device, but it would definitely interfere with its intent of being simple and mess-free.
The battery life of the Hub is great (1500 mAh.) The Stick’s battery is not (250 mAh.) My Stick stays in the Hub as much as possible, so the low battery life of the Stick is irrelevant. I don’t know how long it takes to charge the Stick since mine never depletes fully. Also, it doesn’t matter, since the COSS Hub is a pass-thru power bank.
Once the Stick goes in, it can be vaped on. I checked, and even when the Hub battery dies, you can charge it and still use the Stick while it’s in the Hub. That’s like double pass-thru voodoo or something!
To charge the Hub, just connect through the USB-C port on the bottom of the device. The charge takes 60 minutes, which is fairly quick for that battery size. The meter-style indicator lights start going off as the battery depletes, and they all light up before turning off once the battery has fully charged.
NOTE: When charging the HUB, remember that you can use the device fully during pass-thru mode, but it must be upright to refill—and during the charge is not a good time to overfill!
Almost every vape claims to be innovative. Few are. The COSS truly is innovative. I enjoy showing other vapers this device. It’s like a dream come true. But, alas, the most important factor of vape performance is not as high as the overall COSS system.
I give VAPORESSO a standing ovation for what they’ve created, but I do wish the encore would involve new coils for the COSS Stick. For a device this ambitious, the basic vape performance must be as high.
As of now, I’d recommend the COSS because it’s a great piece of vape tech. However, if the price tag of $100 is too much just to own this groundbreaking device, I would recommend numerous other traditional vapes that cost virtually 1/5 of the price, that give a more satisfying vape.
Recommended, but not as enthusiastically as it could’ve been.