How do Bluetooth® hearing aids work?

Lästid: 3 min.
11-06-20

Bluetooth technology enables the devices we all use in our everyday lives to speak together and transfer data wirelessly. This data could be anything from speech, commands or files – among others. You may know it from headsets, gaming controllers and, of course, mobile phones. It is also an important component in hearing aids.

 

Two standards of Bluetooth technology

“Bluetooth” can refer to two different wireless technologies: classic Bluetooth technology, and Bluetooth Low Energy technology (BLE). The latter is the standard we use in Oticon hearing aids.

While classic Bluetooth technology was originally designed for wireless headsets, Bluetooth Low Energy technology is newer and comes with the great advantage of consuming much less power than classic Bluetooth (thus ensuring a longer battery life for your hearing aids), which is why it is considered by many as the future standard for Bluetooth connections.

Bluetooth Low Energy technology is already used in Apple’s mobile products such as the iPhone. We use Bluetooth Low Energy technology in Oticon hearing aids in part because of its ability to connect simultaneously to two hearing aids. Therefore, it is already possible to stream sound directly from Apple phones to Oticon hearing aids – be it phone calls, music or any other sound.

On the other end of the spectrum, classic Bluetooth technology is still used by most Android devices. As this technology consumes much more power, most hearing aids are not compatible with it - which means direct streaming from Android phones to hearing aids is usually not possible.

Android has however launched at the end of 2019 their Audio Streaming for Hearing Aids (ASHA) feature, and although it can so far only function on a handful of phones, this means that soon Android users will have the same streaming options as the Apple users already enjoy.

Oticon ConnectClip can enhance your experience

So, what do you do in the meantime if your hearing aids can’t connect to your Android phone? This is where Oticon ConnectClip comes in handy!

ConnectClip is a device that wirelessly connects your phone (Android or iPhone) to your Oticon hearing aids. It offers two-way audio, meaning it can stream your voice back to your phone - enabling you to enjoy hands-free phone calls.

It is also helpful in situations where you need to have direct access to someone’s voice – for instance in a noisy environment. It works as a small microphone that the person you are speaking with can wear, so their voice is streamed directly to your hearing aids.

Find more information about ConnectClip

If you would like to learn more the possibilities of connecting your hearing aids to the devices in your life, including phone and television, we invite you to read our blog post on connectivity.