Stellar blue IQOS 3 DUO holder and charger in businessman's hand with HEETS stick inserted.

Heat-not-burn Technology & the Science behind it.

IQOS is the combination of science and technology. 

PMI building in Switzerland

With science to the alternative to cigarettes.

We are convinced that our research can change the lives of 1.1 billion smokers. That's why, for over 10 years, we've been developing and researching products that are less harmful than conventional cigarettes. Like the IQOS heated tobacco. IQOS is an innovative cigarette substitute that contains tobacco (and thus nicotine), but does not burn it, only heats it with the heat-not-burn technology. Numerous studies show: Switching to IQOS means less risk than continuing to smoke - even though IQOS is not risk-free. 

The unique technology behind IQOS.

The IQOS tobacco heater is packed with patented innovations. Like the HeatControl™ technology. It keeps the temperature of the IQOS heating blade constant. This way, tobacco is heated and not burnt. For real tobacco enjoyment without the smell of cigarette smoke.

Learn more     Buy now

Heat not burn.

With patented technologies and our research, we have succeeded in developing a better alternative to smoking. The combustion of tobacco that takes place during smoking releases very high levels of harmful chemicals. In contrast, IQOS uses IQOS HeatControl™ technology to heat tobacco instead of burning it. Thus, the quantity and volume of harmful chemicals are lowered compared to cigarette smoke.

Cigarette smoke is a complex mixture of more than 6.000 chemical substances. More than 100 of them are considered to be harmful or potentially harmful. IQOS does not produce smoke, but rather a tobacco vapor. In order to be certain that this tobacco vapor is less harmful than cigarette smoke, we measure the volume of those chemicals in line with the definitions by the WHO, the FDA, and Health Canada. Studies done both by us and by independent third parties demonstrate how, compared to cigarettes, IQOS releases with the heat-not-burn technology around 95% lower levels of harmful chemicals on average.*

*Average reduction in concentration (weight per tobacco stick) for a broad spectrum of harmful and potentially harmful substances in IQOS versus the smoke from a representative selection of more than 1,600 cigarette brands available in more than 40 countries (including Germany) (measured between 2008 and 2017); evaluation using the Intense Smoking Regime from Health Canada without accounting for nicotine. This does not necessarily mean a 95% reduction in risk, nor that IQOS is risk-free.

Stellar Blue IQOS 3 DUO Holder and Charger on a notebook.

Is IQOS less harmful?

Do lower levels of chemicals in IQOS tobacco vapor also mean fewer harmful chemicals in the body? Is IQOS really less harmful? While it sounds logical, what really matters are scientific studies. That is why we’ve measured a series of those harmful chemicals in a clinical study involving hundreds of smokers and IQOS users. After switching to the IQOS tobacco heating system, the body showed fewer signs of contact with harmful chemicals – almost in the same manner as smokers who had quit smoking normal cigarettes. (We’d like to note here how quitting is the best option, and that IQOS is not an alternative to quitting.)

Stellar Blue IQOS 3 DUO Holder and Charger on a DJ desk.

Whom is IQOS the right choice?

We also studied which groups of people are interested in consuming IQOS. The results show: non-smokers and people who have quit smoking take little or zero interest in IQOS. However, current adult smokers who participated in these studies did show strong interest in IQOS as an alternative to cigarettes and were prepared to switch. That means: smokers who aren’t going to quit can make a better choice and choose an alternative to cigarettes.

A brilliant gold IQOS holder and charger are comfortably held in a man's hand.

We’ll help you make the switch.

Heat-not-burn Technology is being explained with a HEETS stick in a IQOS 3 DUO holder.

Our studies additionally demonstrate that completely switching to IQOS leads to improvements in a series of risk markers associated with diseases caused by smoking. Study participants who had switched to IQOS additionally reported that IQOS delivers similar levels of satisfaction as a conventional cigarette. For us, IQOS has with our heat-not-burn technology the potential to be a real alternative for adult smokers who would otherwise continue to smoke. Based on all of the scientific findings, we are confident that switching to IQOS is less harmful than continuing to smoke conventional cigarettes.

IQOS 3 DUO holder inside the charger

IQOS and nicotine.

Since IQOS uses tobacco, IQOS also contains nicotine. Nicotine is addictive and is not risk-free. However, it is not the primary cause for the diseases induced by smoking. The primary reason for those diseases is associated with the harmful and potentially harmful chemicals released from the combustion of tobacco in a cigarette. Since IQOS is an alternative to smoking that works without combustion, it has an enormous advantage: with its heat-not-burn technology, it produces fewer of those harmful and potentially harmful components.

What effects does IQOS have? We’re looking closely.

We will continue to investigate the degree to which IQOS is less harmful. 14.7 million people have already switched to IQOS. That is why we are concentrating on how and by whom the product is being consumed to supplement the findings from our pre-market studies. We are doing our best to hinder unwanted consumption. Of course, we are also observing the health effects: long-term studies will help us to understand what the specific risks for disease are in connection with IQOS consumption.

Illustration contrasting effects of cigarette smoke versus IQOS on indoor air quality.
Representation of three filters, one pristine and the two others contaminated

Does IQOS contain tar?

"Tar" is the total weight of cigarette smoke residue excluding nicotine and water. The term "tar" is traditionally associated with cigarette smoke and does not fully apply to IQOS tobacco vapor. Water and glycerin make up 90% of the weight of IQOS tobacco vapor. IQOS tobacco vapor does not contain solids and is not really comparable to cigarette smoke, as cigarettes are fundamentally different in composition. Compared to cigarettes, IQOS is a better choice. Important information: IQOS is not risk-free.

IQOS – the innovative cigarette replacement.

Our summary: IQOS is a better alternative to cigarettes. IQOS offers real flavor and genuine tobacco free from smoke, ash, or cigarette odor. According to the scientific findings attained thus far, completely switching to IQOS represents a better option for smokers over continuing to smoke cigarettes.

Discover more about heated tobacco

Woman's hand holding a brilliant gold IQOS 3 DUO holder and charger in a car.