In today’s world of high speed connectivity, it only makes sense that hearing aids follow the same path. Hearing aids that connect to your phone are not a new concept. There has been a version of this connection for years. But in the past it involved wearing a necklace or a pendant. Some manufacturers created a lapel clip. The reason that these bulky add ons were necessary, was to protect the battery life on the hearing aids. If you were to connect a hearing aid directly to your phone to stream the audio, you would end up with a dead battery in a matter of hours. So for years, these necklaces and lapel clips were the only way to have a hearing aid that connected to your phone.
Not any more!
Using a state of the art “low battery drain Bluetooth connection”, hearing aids are now able to connect directly to your smart phone without the use of an additional piece of hardware. This is allowing people the freedom to stream audio and media from their phone unencumbered by bulky add ons that have their own batteries that can run out. These smart phone hearing aids are just another example of an industry that is getting younger and younger.
With many of these models you are able to stream telephone calls, music and audio from you phone right to your ears. Another great feature with smart phone hearing aids is the ability to control the volume and program settings.
Lets say you are going to a high school basketball game. The amount of noise that you are dealing with in a packed gymnasium would be enough to drive anybody crazy, especially somebody that has hearing loss and is struggling to understand in a crowd. But with hearing aids that connect to your phone, an adjustment is just a few taps away. Access the “remote control” feature on the app and turn down the background noise and make your surroundings much more enjoyable.
Many smart phone hearing aids have adjustments available for crowd noise, machine noise and wind noise as well as overall volume and acoustic programs. The acoustic program feature is one of the latest inventions that is changing the way people hear the world.
Using the “create a program” feature, you are able to save certain changes and create a specific program that is best for hearing in a specific setting. Back to our gymnasium example. Once you have perfected the setting, you can save them and use them the next time you are attending a basketball game. Some hearing aids even have a geo-tagging feature in which you can assign a “pin” to certain programs and your phone will automatically switch you to that program when it recognizes you are at a given location. Meaning, the next time you walk into the gym you won’t have to do anything! The hearing aids will recognize where you are and the settings that you prefer when you are there!
The geo tagging feature also provides another useful option to anybody wearing these hearing aids. It will help you find your hearing aid if you lose it!
Using the find my hearing aid button, the app will tell you the last place that your phone and your hearing aid communicated with each other. This will show you the last place you had the hearing aid. Anybody who has lost a hearing aid can understand the peace of mind that comes with being able to retrace your steps and find it.
Every brand is different. Every app is different. We have our preferences and favorites but we always make sure that when we work with patients we listen to what is important to them. Matching a person with the proper hearing aid is one of the most important aspects of what we do as a practice.
If you want to know more about smart phone hearing aids please give our offices a call or send us an email. We would be happy to set up an appointment with one of our hearing professionals to answer questions and perform a complete hearing test.