Imagine driving in your car and listening to the voice of your spouse over the sound of the engine. The radio is on and your kids are having an animated conversation in the back seat.
If you wear hearing aids, you know one of the biggest limitations of some models is trying to distinguish between different sounds.
Phonak, a member of the Sonova Group headquartered in Switzerland, has developed the next generation RIC hearing aid family and believes it may have the answer: According to the press release, Phonak Audéo V is powered by new chip technology that offers twice the processing power while reducing battery consumption up to 30 per cent. It's the next generation Receiver-In-Canal (RIC) hearing aid family based on new Venture platform.
“Clear speech understanding in daily life situations: This is what people with hearing loss expect from a hearing solution. As simple as it may be in quiet surroundings, as challenging it still is on the move or in noisy locations,” says Martin Grieder, Group Vice President of Phonak in the press release. “This is where we have put the focus in developing our new platform and our latest generation of hearing aids. Whether in the car, on the phone or in a restaurant: The new Audéo V RIC hearing aids offer precise performance all while seamlessly adapting from one soundscape to another.”
According to Phonak's website, highlights of the device include:
- AutoSense OS: Seamlessly fits to your changing listening environment. AutoSense OS accurately captures the precise listening environment you are in to provide you with a comfortable, seamless listening experience throughout your day.
- Speech in Loud Noise: Extracts the single voice you want to hear from a noisy crowd. When noise reaches a level that makes understanding one person in a crowd difficult, StereoZoom is automatically activated, allowing you to focus on the voice you want to hear.
- Speech in 360°: Understand speech from any direction. Automatically selects the direction of speech and sends this speech signal from one ear to the other, improving speech intelligibility without the need to face the speaker.
- Speech in Wind: Enjoy conversations even on a windy day. When wearing hearing aids wind noise interferes with speech understanding and listening comfort. The Speech in Wind feature enhances your ability to understand speech well, even when the wind is blowing.
The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders says about 2 percent of adults aged 45 to 54 have disabling hearing loss. The rate increases to 8.5 percent for adults aged 55 to 64. Nearly 25 percent of those aged 65 to 74 and 50 percent of those who are 75 and older have disabling hearing loss.
According to a Statistics Canada report, 19.0% of people with a hearing condition used an aid or assistive device. People with severe hearing limitations were twice as likely to use aids or specialized equipment (32.4%) than were people with mild hearing limitations (16.3%). The most commonly used assistive devices for people with a hearing limitation were hearing aids (79.7%) and volume control telephones (35.5%). Also common were computers to communicate (13.1%), closed caption televisions or decoders (10.3%), and visual or vibrating alarms (6.7%).
It's because of statistics like these why Connect Hearing Canada offers free hearing tests.
Jon Waterhouse, Manager of Professional Practice for Connect Hearing Canada says he is excited at this new technology from Phonak and believes it will help people dealing with hearing loss. He says every year the technology is getting better and this is great news for people with hearing health issues.
"What the Phonak Audéo V does is give people with hearing health issues more options and horizons,” says Waterhouse. “When I look at where hearing technology was just six or seven years ago, it really does blow my mind to see some of the exciting innovations coming out today. And it isn't just the capability of these devices, it's how much easier they integrate into a person's life. If you are dealing with hearing loss, I can't encourage you strongly enough to get into one of our clinics for a free hearing test. There are wonderful options out there, and we want to help.”
The Phonak Audéo V hearing aid family is available in four newly designed styles, all wireless, at four performance levels.