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What is Hearable Technology?

What is Hearable Technology? - Hearing, Balance and Speech Center

Technology has played a big part in many of our lives. Entertainment, fitness, and medicine are just a few industries that have been revolutionized by technological advances.

Health technology has made it easier for us to track our own health and wellness. Interested in how many steps you’re racking up each day? There’s wearable technology for that. How about understanding how you’re sleeping? There’s a health tech solution for that too!

The hearing industry has also benefited from advancements in health tech. Hearing assessments are more sensitive. Hearing healthcare providers can provide more bespoke hearing solutions for their patients. And the patients themselves can take full advantage of hearable technology.

What is Hearable Technology?

“Hearable” is a combination of two words: headphone and wearable. The term was first used by Apple in April 2014. The initial description for hearable technology came from Valencell in 2006. They described it as a “a wearable ear-worn multimedia platform for health monitoring, heart rate monitoring, entertainment, guidance, and cloud-based communications.”

Hearable technology is essentially an in-ear computational earpiece. Think of the hearable as a microcomputer that fits in your ear. Using wireless technology, hearables will enhance and supplement your hearing. Many modern hearable tech devices include additional features, such as the ability to monitor your heart rate.

Hearable technology is in a great position in the current marketplace. Why? Two reasons in particular:

  1. Hearing aid wearers are looking for hearing devices that do more than just amplify sound. Hearing aids with connectivity features like Bluetooth are increasingly sought after.
  2. Headphone manufacturers are seeing the potential of “bionics.” Their aim is to create in-ear buds that produce quality sounds, measure biometrics, and can amplify sound.

The Future is Hear

The hearable tech sector is definitely going to grow and continue to evolve. However, hearing aid wearers today can reap the benefits of hearable advances.

Here are some of the benefits that hearable technology can provide:

  • Activity tracking - Step tracking is just one activity that hearable tech can track, depending on the device.
  • Biometric personal identification - NEC announced the development of “biometric personal identification technology that uses the resonation of sound determined by the shape of human ear cavities to distinguish individuals.”
  • Improved sound quality - Quality of sound can be greatly influenced by a device’s ability to filter sound. Hearable tech, combining technology from hearing aids and headphones, can improve sound quality.
  • Invisibility - Unfortunately, there is still a perceived stimag when it comes to wearing hearing aids. Hearables are small in size, making them far less visible.

Where Can You Get Hearable Technology?

There is a range of hearable technology available on the market today. These include:

  • Hearing aids
  • Headphones / earbuds
  • Personal Sound Amplifiers (PSAPs)

Many hearing aids have built-in hearable technology or are capable of seamlessly connecting to hearable tech providing users with greater control over their hearing aid devices.

We’re Here to Help You!

At Hearing Balance & Speech, we carry hearing aids from all the leading manufacturers. If you still have questions and would like to learn more, contact us today. Our hearing professionals would be happy to discuss hearable technology with you. Click here to request an appointment online.

Research / Sources

  1. https://www.clearliving.com/hearing/technology/hearables/
  2. https://www.nec.com/en/press/201603/global_20160307_01.html
  3. https://www.oticon.co.uk/hearing-aid-users/hearing-aids/products/opn-behind-the-ear-hearing-aids
  4. https://valencell.com/press/2018/12/valencell-to-showcase-wide-range-of-new-wearable-and-hearable-user-experiences-fueled-by-accurate-biometric-sensors-at-ces-2019/
  5. https://www.fastcompany.com/90212065/the-future-is-ear-why-hearables-are-finally-techs-next-big-thing