Hearing aids have advanced dramatically throughout the past 10-15 years.
As each year passes by, hearing aids become smaller, more discreet, and more reliable at enhancing sound. They also come well equipped with a number of innovative features, such as the capability to connect to other gadgets wirelessly, which is what we’ll be going over today.
Here’s how wireless technology works and how you can benefit.
How Bluetooth technology works
Bluetooth is a standardized wireless communication platform that permits devices to communicate with each other through radio waves. A wide variety of products incorporates Bluetooth technology, such as smartphones, music players, tablets, computers, and televisions.
Have you ever watched someone talking on their phone using a hands-free wireless headset? Or somebody taking a call from their cell phone using their car audio system? That’s Bluetooth technology in action.
So can you purchase a Bluetooth hearing aid?
Yes and no. Bluetooth technology requires a greater power supply than can be granted by hearing aid batteries. But there is a workaround, and in fact, there are two.
Your options for wireless hearing aids
Hearing aids do not incorporate Bluetooth technology directly because, as we said, it would deplete the battery too rapidly. Fortunately, manufacturers solved this problem long ago by creating an intermediary between the hearing aid and the Bluetooth device (phone, television, computer, etc.). This intermediary is referred to as either a “streamer” or an “assistive listening device.”
Here’s how it works: your Bluetooth equipped cell phone communicates wirelessly to the streamer which then transmits the signal to the hearing aid without draining the battery.
So, if you’re shopping around for wireless hearing aids, you have two main options:
- Hearing aids paired with an assistive listening device – as described above, the assistive listening device, or streamer, which is a small hand-held device, acts as an intermediary between the Bluetooth device and the hearing aid.
- Made for iPhone hearing aids – several hearing aid models are branded as “Made for iPhone,” which essentially means that the iPhone acts as the streamer itself, connecting directly with the hearing aid.
Your hearing care professional can help you determine which option is right for you.
The advantages of wireless hearing aids
Whether using a streamer or a Made for iPhone hearing aid, there are numerous perks to going wireless, including:
- Improved music listening experience – imagine streaming your favorite music from your iPhone or portable music player directly to your hearing aids. This way,, your hearing aids become a pair of high-quality earbuds.
- Hands-free phone calls – answering calls without the use of your hands is more convenient and having the sound stream directly to the hearing aids results in better sound quality.
- Clearer TV sound – streaming the audio from your computer, tablet, or TV results in cleaner sound and enhanced speech comprehension from movies and TV shows. You’ll never struggle to follow dialogue again.
- Better gym experience – listen to your favorite podcasts or music at the gym without any wires getting in the way.
- Customized control – discreetly adjust your hearing aid volume and settings by utilizing your wireless remote control or iPhone (with compatible models).
- Connection to hearing loops – hearing aids equipped with telecoils can connect with hearing loop systems in public venues like auditoriums, theaters, and courts.
Considering upgrading to wireless hearing aids? Contact us today for more information.