You may have heard of bionic hearing gadgets before. On the surface, they seem similar to ear implants. They’re little devices that you put inside your ear to enhance your hearing capabilities.
However, these gadgets aren’t necessarily targeted at the hearing impaired. In fact, many intend to enhance the hearing of the average person.
What Are They?
These bionic hearing gadgets fall into the realm of wearables, which have become popular in recent years. Think smartwatches that track your heart rate and you’re on the right track.
Typically, these gadgets look and feel somewhat like earphones. You slot them into your ears, then use a mobile device to control how you hear what’s around you. For example, you may be able to alter treble and bass to change how you listen to music. Or, you could block specific noises from impacting your ears.
It’s the latter feature that may prove useful in regards to hearing impairment. Imagine being able to block the constant noise of a pneumatic drill if you’re a laborer, or lower your instrument’s volume as a musician.
They’re still a developing technology, but several manufacturers are working on bionic hearing aids. These include the likes of Doppler, Soundhawk, and Nuheara.
How Do They Work?
Typically, these gadgets use computer algorithms to cancel out or enhance sounds before they reach your ear. You’ll use a smartphone app to tell the implant what to block and what to let through.
They do this using Bluetooth. However, that raises some potential issues. You must have your control device handy at all times to keep the implant working. Plus, you have to rely on your Bluetooth connection.
Bionic hearing gadgets are still under development, but they’ve made exciting progress thus far. As well as enhancing the hearing of the average person, they may be usable to block out the constant sounds that lead to long-term hearing impairment.