Technology is an amazing thing, isn’t it? It’s given us cars and tractors that can drive themselves, brought us robots and artificial intelligence, heck we can even clone sheep and 3D print organs. But that’s not the only thing technology has brought us.
Hearing aids from days gone by were wonderful creations and many people were able to benefit from their presence. However, these devices were considered big, cumbersome, uncomfortable, and everyone around you could see them. And not only did they amplify the things you wanted to hear, but EVERYTHING around you, whether you wanted to hear it or not.
While you could hear the person talking to you, you could also hear the vehicles rushing through the parking lot behind you, wind howling in the trees, even the scratch of static in the device itself. These days, almost everyone has something stuffed into their ear, whether it’s earbuds, a Bluetooth headset, or a tiny, imperceptible hearing aid.
As we’ve evolved into the sphere of smartphones, Bluetooth technology, and handheld devices, we’ve got more opportunities in front of us than ever before and 2020 has even more in store for us in the months to come. With the new technologies presented from manufacturers such as Phonak, Signia, and Starkey, there’s a hearing device out there for everyone.
The behind-the-ear (BTE) devices are still available, but many people living with hearing loss are moving along with technology and are trying out the newer, smaller, and more stylish in-the-ear (ITE) devices. These options are now equipped with Bluetooth connectivity, allowing you to stream audio from movies, music, and even connect to your vehicle’s audio system.
With the growing popularity of cell phones keeping people’s eyes glued to the screen, manufacturers of hearing aids are concentrating on designing products that can harmonize with smartphones. Users can more easily control the way they hear, no matter where they go.
A significant accomplishment has been the ability to change the settings on your hearing aid via an app on your phone. You can adjust volume, treble, and base with a couple of taps of the screen. The fact that its discreet is attractive to many, as people all around you can be seen fiddling with their phones. No more visiting the specialist to have adjustments or distractedly trying to do it yourself when you enter and leave different rooms or environments.
Phonak has cornered the 2020 market by coming up with an app that takes your phone call and transcribes the other person’s words onto your phone in a text message. Available in more than 80 languages, three font sizes, and can be used even if the other person is on a landline, the myCall-to-Text app is a game-changer for many.
This app allows you to save the transcription for reviewing later if need be. Though Wi-Fi is needed for the feature to work, this hands-free Phonak device works with the Phonak Marvel hearing aids. No more missing out on part of the conversation, you can simply read it in real-time as the other person is speaking.
The Phonak Marvel is one of the most state-of-the-art platforms available to hearing aid wearers. Offering the AutoSense OS™ 3.0, it provides improved understanding of speech in noisy areas, a rich sound with streaming opportunities, excellent sound quality, and reduced listening effort. The ability to stream audio from any available Bluetooth device is a plus as is hands-free usage, which available with both Android and iPhone devices. Rechargeable, the wearer can listen from dawn to dusk without having to stop to charge back up.
The Styletto, from Signia is a stunning combination of sleek and stylish behind-the-ear hearing aid that may be mistaken for a fashion accessory instead of a hearing device. Designed for outstanding clarity as well as it’s good looks, the Styletto also comes equipped for portable rechargeability. For every three hours of charge time, you can go, go, go for up to 19 hours.
This device comes in three combinations of color- Cosmic Blue/Rose Gold, Dark Granite/Silver, and Snow White/Rose Gold. Unlike the traditional BTE hearing aids, this device is very discreet due to its slim design, including a slim speaker tube and housing that’s virtually unnoticeable.
We’d be remiss if we didn’t add the Livio AI. The first of its kind, this BTE hearing aid employs artificial intelligence to not only offer premium quality sound, but it can track both your physical and mental health. Compatible with its smartphone app, you can enjoy a customized sound that can be adjusted as you see fit, and since the devices are able to communicate with each other, it offers improved listening when there is background noise.
In addition to smartphones, the Livio AI can link with other wireless devices such as a TV streaming device or a remote microphone. The smartphone app has the capability to translate speech from different languages and then to the hearing aid in whichever language you’d like to receive it.
With top of the line on-board sensors, these hearing aids can track the brains activity as well as the bodies. This is an excellent way to keep updated on overall health as well as cut the chances of developing a variety of different diseases. And because there is the likelihood of people with hearing loss having balance issues and suffering from more falls, the Livio is able to track how many falls occur This allows the wearer to maintain an awareness of their bodies ability to balance and to seek additional assistance such as physical therapy or simple exercises to improve balance.
With all these benefits of modern technology, there’s a hearing aid out there for everyone. Call your hearing health professional today and make an appointment to explore some new options.