Two of the world’s largest hearing aid makers, based a few miles apart from each other in Denmark, are waging a potentially epic worldwide legal struggle over patent issues that may be critical to both their futures — and to the future of “Made-for-iPhone” hearing aids. GN Store Nord, whose GN ReSound hearing aid unit introduced the first iPhone-compatible hearing aids, this week lost a battle with arch-rival Oticon but insists it should ultimately win the war. [Read more…]
The William Demant Group, parent of Oticon hearing aids and other brands, reported 11 percent revenue growth in the first half of 2015 compared to the first half of the previous year, driven by strong performance of its new sound processing platform, especially in the U.S. [Read more…]
With continued revenue growth in its fiscal second quarter, GN Store Nord, parent of the GN ReSound Group of hearing technology brands, is powering through challenges including a costly case of fraud in a U.S. hearing aid subsidiary and contraction of business in its non-hearing-aid headset subsidiary.
The Denmark holding company reported overall growth of four percent, driven by eight percent organic growth in its GN ReSound Group hearing technologies unit, which includes ReSound, Beltone and Interton hearing aids as well as GN Otometrics, a supplier of audiology equipment. The company pointed to the successful launch of ReSound’s second-generation of Made-for-iPhone Linx2 hearing aids as a high point of the quarter, which saw revenue grow to DKK 2,035 million ($303 million USD). [Read more…]
With the conclusion of its multi-billion-dollar acquisition of Siemens AG’s audiology business Thursday, a private investment group led by EQT Partners announced a new name for the company — Sivantos Group — along with an ambitious agenda to quickly make its presence felt as one of the world’s largest independent hearing aid manufacturers.
Siemens Hearing Instruments for decades had been among the “Big Six” manufacturers that account for more than 80 percent of the world’s hearing aid sales. But it’s been five years since the parent conglomerate announced it wanted to spin off its hearing aid business, and the tortuous, stop-and-go process that finally led to yesterday’s announcement left many industry observers scratching their heads: [Read more…]
With its new Z Series hearing aids, Starkey Hearing Technologies has improved wireless connectivity between its hearing aids and peripheral audio streaming devices. The company said its new 900sync™ technology utilizing the 900 MHz transmission band enables more robust sound and “virtually drop free” streaming into the hearing aids from a normal range of five meters or less. [Read more…]
Phonak’s new Bolero Q behind-the-ear (BTE) and Virto Q in-the-ear (ITE) hearing aid families are a good example of how next-generation wireless binaural sound processing technology is starting to deliver real speech-comprehension improvements in challenging listening environments.
Phonak’s new Quest technology platform leverages a new high-performance digital signal processor to reduce wind interference as well as improve speech comprehension in noise.
Phonak says its autoStereoZoom feature delivers a 3 decibel improvement in signal-to-noise ratio, resulting in an improvement in speech intelligibility of up to 45 percent (click on the video at right for a demonstration). Phonak adds the Speech in Wind function has delivered measurable improvements in speech intelligibility of up to 40 percent. [Read more…]
Widex scored a PR coup today with a CNN report on its advanced manufacturing technology used for its in-the-ear hearing aids.
The on-air report (right) shows how Widex’s proprietary CAMISHA process — Computer Aided Manufacturing of Individual Shells for Hearing Aids — produces the tiny invisible in-the-canal (IIC) shells for its mind and Menu hearing aid models.
3D-print technologies are revolutionizing the world of manufacturing, dramatically reducing the time and cost of producing custom products to extremely demanding specifications. The Widex CAMISHA 3D-print manufacturing technology works from a digital scan of a patient’s ear mold impression to automatically produce a plastic shell for the tiny hearing aid. If you scroll to the 1:30 mark in the CNN video, you will get a rare glimpse of 3D printing at work.
Click here ro read more from CNN about the Widex CAMISHA 3D-print manufacturing technology.
New Unitron Max Super-Power hearing aids address one of the biggest dangers people with severe-to-profound hearing loss face — the temptation to turn up the volume to catch conversations in noisy settings to levels that can damage your hearing. Unitron Max is the first super power hearing instrument on the market with a Power Adaptation Manager that automatically moderates over-amplification while continuing to maximize speech intelligibility.
Over-amplification is a bigger concern than you might think. I find myself constantly turning up my hearing aids to follow conversations, even when the over-amplification of very noisy ambient sound bothers my ears. Worse, I’ll often forget to turn the volume down long after I need the extra boost. I’ve also been guilty of badgering my fitter for even more gain to let me tune into other people’s voices — even when I know that too much amplification can further degrade the hearing that I still do have. [Read more…]