One of the largest advancements in hearing aids in recent years is the incorporation of Bluetooth® technology into the devices. Not all hearing aids are Bluetooth® compatible, but it’s becoming a more standard technology due to its usefulness in connecting devices to each other. Essentially, Bluetooth® technology can turn hearing aids into wireless headsets, for ease of use with the phone, TV and other devices.
In fact, after the World Health Organization’s International Ear Care Day, the European Hearing Instrument Manufacturers Association (EHIMA) and Bluetooth® announced a partnership through a joint statement to develop a new standard for hearing aids so that all are outfitted with Bluetooth® wireless technology. This is a major advancement because EHIMA is the largest association of hearing aid manufacturers in the world – they likely set the trend for what others will do.
“It is really exciting to see Bluetooth® technology used to improve people’s lives in such a fundamental way, and to explore how Bluetooth Smart can improve current hearing instruments with its amazing power performance and enable entirely new ways for people to customize their hearing experience,” said Mark Powell, Bluetooth® Special Interest Group’s executive director.
Bluetooth® is now ubiquitous, as it’s been around for many years and is the largest wireless technology service. In fact, it’s built into billions of products around the globe, including computers, tablets, laptops, cars, mobile phones and medical devices. It allows people to share information between devices without needing to attach wires. This includes data, music, videos, photos and voice information. If you’re interested, you can read more here about how Bluetooth® works to connect and streamline various devices.
Bluetooth® and hearing loss solutions
One way that Bluetooth® can really help hearing aid wearers is with cell phone compatibility. Traditional hearing aids with cell phones create a lot of interference and static, which often causes people to remove their hearing aids. However, Bluetooth® technology can erase this issue, turning hearing aids into a wireless headset that communicates with the Bluetooth system in cell phones for static-free conversations, as well as for use with an mp3 player.
Additionally, Bluetooth® has a new technology called Bluetooth Smart and another called Smart Ready. These use low energy, which is great because they allow hearing aid batteries to last longer than they otherwise would with traditional wireless technology.