Next BIG Thing: Apple & Hearing Aids
People wait in long lines and even camp out to get their hands on new Apple devices as soon as they’re available. But they drag their feet, sometimes for years, when it comes to purchasing another piece of technology that could greatly improve their lives: hearing aids.
Hearing-aid manufacturers and audiologists hope a new collaboration between them and Apple will help.
Danish hearing-aid company GN ReSound last week announced a new hearing aid that’s compatible with the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. Called LiNX, the device syncs wirelessly with the newest Apple mobile devices and takes advantage of iOS 7’s new accessibility options for the hearing-impaired.
At its most basic level, the LiNX acts like a hybrid of hearing aids and stereo Bluetooth headphones. Phone calls, FaceTime chats, music, movies, turn-by-turn navigation or other audio can be streamed directly to a small earpiece. When they’re not pulling in audio from a smartphone or tablet, the hearing aids work like normal, picking up in-person conversations and surrounding sounds.
Apple worked closely with ReSound on the hearing aid and assisted them in publicizing its launch. And this being Apple, there are plenty of bells and whistles packed into the device.
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