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 equipped with a variety of state-of-the-art 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 reap the benefits.
How Bluetooth technology works
Bluetooth is a standardized wireless communication platform that permits devices to interact with each other through radio waves. A large range of products incorporates Bluetooth technology, including smartphones, portable music players, tablets, computers, and TVs.
Have you ever observed someone speaking on their phone using a hands-free wireless headset? Or someone taking a call from their mobile 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 calls for a greater power supply than can be delivered 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 include Bluetooth technology directly because, as we mentioned, it would deplete the battery too quickly. Thankfully, manufacturers solved this problem a while ago by creating an intermediary between the hearing aid and the Bluetooth device (computer, television, phone, 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 directs the signal to the hearing aid without depleting the battery.
So, if you’re shopping around for wireless hearing aids, you have two primary options:
- Hearing aids combined with an assistive listening device – as identified 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 – some hearing aid models are branded as “Made for iPhone,” which in essence means that the iPhone acts as the streamer itself, connecting directly with the hearing aid.
Your hearing care expert can help you decide which option is right for you.
The benefits of wireless hearing aids
Whether using a streamer or a Made for iPhone hearing aid, there are numerous benefits to going wireless, including:
- Better music listening experience – think about streaming your favorite music from your iPhone or handheld 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 with no hands is more convenient and having the audio stream directly to the hearing aids provides better sound quality.
- Sharper TV sound – streaming the audio from your computer, tablet, or television results in cleaner sound and superior speech comprehension from movies and TV shows. You’ll never struggle to understand dialogue again.
- Enhanced gym experience – listen to your favorite podcasts or music at the gym without any wires getting in the way.
- Customized control – subtly adjust your hearing aid volume and settings by utilizing your wireless remote control or iPhone (with compatible models).
- Connection to hearing loops – hearing aids fit with telecoils can connect with hearing loop systems in community venues like auditoriums, movie theaters, and courts.
Thinking about upgrading to wireless hearing aids? Call us today for more information.