Dow Jones is reporting that Siemens, the giant diversified global technology company, once again is considering selling off its Siemens Hearing Instruments business.
The sale of one of the world’s six biggest hearing aid manufacturers could represent a tectonic shift in a global hearing aid industry that has been struggling to achieve higher growth rates in a world where millions of people with hearing loss need hearing aids but don’t have them. Read more
Unitron’s Flex Hearing Aids Let New Users Find Out Right Away What Hearing Enhancement Can Do For Them
Unitron’s new Flex hearing aids will make it easier for first-time customers to immediately discover the benefits of hearing enhancement. The Flex:trial hearing aids can be programmed to replicate a very broad range of sound profiles addressed by multiple models in Unitron’s broad product line.
Unitron will stock audiologists and authorized fitters with Flex:trial devices which can be programmed immediately after patients get their hearing tests, so the customer can go home with fully programmed digital hearing aids immediately after the first office visit.
The usual process takes longer, with the hearing test results dictating the right choice of hearing aids, the audiologist ordering the devices, and then scheduling a second meeting with the patient to try on the new hearing aids. Read more
The 57th International Congress of Hearing Aid Acousticians sponsored by EUHA in Frankfurt this week sets the stage for a new generation of hearing-aid products and technologies that will shape the industry in 2013.
Prof. Gunter Dueck, a philosopher, writer, columnist, mathematician, management expert, and former Distinguished Engineer and Chief Technology Officer at IBM Germany, is kicking off the conference with a keynote speech entitled “The Digital World – Between Commodity and Premium.” And more than 100 manufacturers will be showing their wares on the exhibition floor.
Siemens, ReSound, Phonak, Unitron and other leading manufacturers are introducing new products that are expected to deliver new benefits to hearing-aid users and a shot of energy to an international hearing-aid industry depending on product innovation to outperform the continued slow growth of the global economy.
Some of the most interesting product and technology news will come in three areas: sound processing software, digital signal processing performance, and wireless communication. Read more
Oticon Hearing Aids Owner William Demant Reports 9% Unit Sales Growth, Outpacing Sluggish Global Market Growth
Zero revenue growth for the global hearing aid market in 2012? That’s among the nuggets in the good-news-bad-news first-half financial report from William Demant Holding A/S, parent of the Oticon and Bernafon hearing aid brands.
The good news is the company saw a nine percent increase in unit sales of its hearing aids in the first half of its fiscal year. The bad news is that the company’s strong product portfolio is outpacing the overall hearing market, which it says is only expanding at an anemic 3-4% unit growth rate worldwide.
Further, while William Demant captured a greater share of the global hearing aid market and grew its own organic revenue by four percent in the period, the company said that lower selling prices worldwide are leading to zero revenue growth for the overall hearing aid market. Read more
Apple’s ‘Made-For-iPhone’ Hearing Aid Initiative May Be A Game-Changer For GN ReSound And The Rest Of The Hearing Industry
The hearing aid industry right now is like a box of dry tinder waiting for a match. The tinder is a collection of digital and wireless technology standards that have the potential to transform a pair of smartphone earbuds into full-blown custom programmable hearing aids. The match is Apple’s iPhone.
With GN ReSound’s disclosure that it will introduce a new family of high-end “Made-for-iPhone” digital hearing aids this year, the race is on to provide seamless connectivity between high-end hearing aids and smartphones like the iPhone. Apple recently announced it is adapting its new iPhone iOS 6 operating system to connect with hearing aids and that it is “working with top manufacturers to introduce ‘Made-for-iPhone’ hearing aids that will deliver a power-efficient, high-quality digital audio experience.”
GN ReSound, which already provides wireless transmission technology in its popular Alera hearing aids that is compatible with Apple’s 2.4 gigahertz transmission protocol, will deliver the new iPhone compatible hearing aids in September, ReSound chief Lars Viksmoen told Reuters.
If you can recharge your cell phone once and it will work for several days, why can’t you do the same thing with your hearing aids? Jerry L. Yanz of Hansaton will tell anyone within earshot why. More important, he will tell you how yesterday’s inadequate rechargeable hearing aids are being replaced by new rechargeables that actually work the way you do–all day long.
Until recently, the few rechargeable hearing aids on the market had significant limitations. Often their charge lasted less than a full day, so if you depended on them from morning to night, you were out of luck.
Many first-generation rechargeable hearing aids also suffered from the problem you had with early cell phone batteries — if you recharged them before they were completely empty, they would run out of gas quicker and quicker after each charge. Read more
Hearing Aid Sales And Job Satisfaction Go Hand-In-Hand As Unitron Is Named One Of Canada’s 50 Best Small and Medium Employers
I’ve worked with hundreds of high-tech companies in my consulting career. By and large, their corporate cultures are focused less on the long-term job satisfaction of their employees than on having them work as many hours as it takes to achieve peak performance every day in a never-ending, constantly accelerating race to stay ahead of equally fast-moving competitors.
But ever since I’ve been involved with the hearing aid industry, I’ve seen a different side of the high-tech equation — companies and employees united by a mission and common social purpose.
The hearing aid industry is loaded with as much technology as any of the fast-moving hardware and software companies in Silicon Valley, and it’s got its share of die-hard competitors. Nevertheless, job satisfaction is generally very high. Read more
If You Were A Major Hearing Aid Company And Got A Half-Billion Dollar Windfall, What Would You Do With It?
If you were one of the world’s largest hearing-aid companies and suddenly received a half-billion dollar windfall, what would you do with it? That’s exactly the position GN Store Nord finds itself in today.
The parent of GN ReSound hearing aids and GN Netcom headsets will get 550 million Euros (approximately $530 million US) after prevailing in a long-standing civil dispute with Poland’s largest telecommunications company. In the Bloomberg News summary of the settlement, GN Store Nord executives indicated they will use the money primarily to make further investments in its ReSound hearing aid business, including potential acquisitions. Read more