ReSound recently attended the CE Week Conference & Exhibit in New York, which showcased many innovative new products and technologies. During the conference, ReSound’s Vice President of Marketing, Mike Fryar, chatted with Geek Beat TV about the world’s smartest hearing aid, ReSound LiNX.
“Its first job is to help people with hearing loss,” says Fryar. “These [hearing aids] are designed to identify the speech and avoid the noise. People have such a hard time in the environments they want to hear the most.”
One of the hosts, John, tells his own personal story of how a prolonged hearing infection led to a 50% hearing loss in one of his ears. “In this kind of noisy environment, I’ll stare at your lips and I’ll turn to get my good ear at you. It’s embarrassing.”
Fryar explains to John that he could regain balance in his hearing through the sophisticated signal processing behind ReSound LiNX. “We’ve got engineers that do nothing but specialize in digital signal processing and they understand speech and acoustics in restaurants” and other noisy environments. “They spend a ton of time trying to make them work in those kinds of environments.”
And we know that what matters most is sound quality. “There was a third party study and [ReSound LiNX] received the top ranking in the world for sound quality,” says Fryar. “More than anything, you want them to have great sound quality, which really means you want to feel like you’re not wearing them.”
John’s co-host, Cali says she’s excited about ReSound LiNX, even though she doesn’t have a hearing loss. “I need them; she just wants them,” laughs John. “Because they’re so cool,” she confirms. And they are.
“Cool” is the focus of a New Scientist article about next generation hearing aids. Frank Swain writes: “When it comes to personal electronics, it’s difficult to imagine iPhones and hearing aids in the same sentence. I use both and know that hearing aids have a well-deserved reputation as deeply uncool lumps of beige plastic worn mainly by the elderly. Apple, on the other hand, is the epitome of cool consumer electronics.” But, he adds, “the two are getting a lot closer.”
Lloyd Alter, a writer for TreeHugger, says “they need a better name for these things.” After borrowing a pair for a two week trial, he was disappointed to have to give them back. “Instead of putting off buying hearing aids…people should be lining up for these things, it is a whole new world of connectivity.” He adds, “Instead of hearing aid denial and fear, we are going to soon see envy.”