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Putting the Cool in Digital Hearing Aid Design

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Fashion meets… hearing aids and high tech. Hearing aid design has come a very long way: with sleek new looks and spiffy new features, stylish hearing aids of all types — in ear hearing aids, bte hearing aids, ric hearing aids — may be the next step. Here are our reviews for the top 12 coolest digital hearing aid fashions that currently being conceived by various design studios. Who knows, we might not be that far away from hearing aids becoming the next fashion accessory.

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The Hummingbird, a Stylish Digital Hearing Aid

This is a hearing aid from the do it yourself camp; this design brings you closer to nature by turning your hearing aid into a colorful hummingbird hearing aid. Maybe more for the eccentrics out there.

 The Plug, a Funky Digital Hearing Aid Fashion

This hearing aid plus piercing combination is for the hardcore and hard of hearing. The PLUG hearing aid looks like a large, popular piercing called a gauge, which comes in a variety of color combinations, which means you can easily personalize it to your aesthetic. Nonetheless, the punk rocker look likely only appeals to a very small crowd.

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SoundsGood Hear-ring, a Snazzy Digital Hearing Aid Design

Designed for the modern woman in mind, this hearing aid earring is straight out of a science fiction film. This SoundsGood hearing aid was designed by a design student who had visuals in mind. The earring is made up of a mini music visualizer–this means it takes the sound waves entering your hearing aid and generates a dynamic graphic. So you can see the sound waves while you hear them, all while wearing a stylish accessory. This is a beautifully articulated hearing aid design, although it may be hard to match with an outfit. Of course, while the hearing aid earring was first designed for women, stylish men can wear it too!

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The WireEar, a Smooth Digital Hearing Aid

Wireear hearing aid is a smooth and stylish hearing aid design with functionality in mind. The smart shape situates the microphone right to the front of the ear, and the speaker ends up right inside the ear canal. By positioning these essential hearing aid elements just right, the creators hope to cut down on common hearing aid problems, including echoes and poor sound quality. On the visual end, this hearing aid looks like a bracelet around your ear. On top of an improved assistive listening device, you have an awesome accessory.

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Babelfisk, A Digital Hearing Aid with Insight

Subtitle your life in style. A design concept entitled Babelfisk hearing aid, these eyeglasses use speech-recognition software to transcribe the spoken word. So when someone speaks, the glasses use tiny projectors to spell out their words, right before your very eyes. The glasses have a nifty retro look, combining vintage appeal with modern materials. This stylish hearing aid seems incredibly exciting for the extremely hard-of-hearing, although it may be a bit unwieldy. Users will also have to stay fairly sensitive to possible misunderstandings, as speech recognition software is far from perfect.

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HearRings, a Stylish Digital Hearing Aid

Designed by a partially deaf audiologist for her own hearing aids, Hearrings hearing aids turn assistive devices into accessories. The earrings are made with Swarovski crystals and come in a variety of colors to match different outfits. While the hearts add a whimsical touch and the bling adds a sparkle to your ear, this hearing aid fashion will likely appeal to very few men.

 

 

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Siemens Vibe, the Digital Hearing Aid for the Hip

The Vibe hearing aid is Siemens’ addition to the hip hearing aid fashion arena. With its racy leopard design it sits in the crest of the ear. It is subtle and leaves the ear canal unblocked. Similar to the Pulse, it looks like the user has adopted a trendy new style of ear piercing.

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Tribal Solar Powered Digital Hearing Aids

This solar-powered hearing aid device was designed by Andrew Carr, a mechanical engineer in Cambridge, who noticed most hearing aids donated to Africa don’t help because they treat a different type of hearing loss more prevalent in the West. The hearing aid Carr developed must be held close to the ear to work, but doesn’t have to be worn inside. Carr’s device has an internal solar-powered battery and can be looped into a necklace or attached to a hat so it’s next to the person’s ear. As such it blends in better with local tribal cultures than the light pink hearing aid designs seen in the West.

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The Decibel, a Digital Hearing Aid by Priestman Goode

Shown at Albert and Victoria Museum’s “Hearwear” exhibit in London, the Decibel hearing aid (designed by Priestman Goode) protects the user’s ears in noisy environments while allowing certain sounds to get through – for example, a mobile phone, laptop or MP3 player.

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IDEO Microphone/Hearing Aid

This hearing aid was created after IDEO came up with the idea of linking a microphone to a conductive strip running around the edge of a table in a bar. Customers then buy inexpensive ear pieces from the bar (pictured) so that they can converse in comfort. That should definitely take care losing your voice after an evening of screaming across the table.

 

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Goldfish Digital Hearing Aids – by Human Beans

Based on the notion that goldfish have a ten second memory, this hearing aid – created by Human Beans – constantly records ten seconds of sound. To activate the replay the wearer just waves their hand past their ear.

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The Universal Hear-ring, a Cool Digital Hearing Aid

The Universal Hear-ring by Pearson Lloyd is a basic core which can house a variety of hardware – handsfree mobile headset, wireless MP3 headphones or digital hearing aids. The user can customize it by adding separate outer rings to suit mood, style or occasion.

Source: http://www.pearsonlloyd.com/

Keep in mind that the future is not here… yet. So before Audicus Hearing Aids can start offering you similar stylish hearing aid designs, check out our existing hearing product portfolio!

Sources: Audicus Hearing Aids, Victoria & Albert Museum, BBC

by Patrick Freuler

12 responses to “Putting the Cool in Digital Hearing Aid Design

  1. Yeah, these hearing aids will improve the ability of brain to process speech. You can properly hear your good one’s voice and background noise like crowd.

  2. Wow, such cool designs! It is exciting to see people paying attention to design for hearing aids, so that wearers can be proud to wear their devices – much the same as with designer glasses. Can you post a selection of hearing aid related accessories and interesting hearing aids for kids?

  3. I am a fan of Star Trek and I would love a hearing aid that looks like Seven of Nines Implant. A Borg design. I love your designs. I was recently advised that I have to get two hearing aids fitted and I was really depressed because the designs used by the health service where I live in Ireland are really clumsy and cumbersome. I am not looking forward to the fitting in two weeks time but seeing your designs has restored my hope that I can have a hearing aid and still look cool.

  4. Thankyou for this, these designs are inspiring. I am wondering how to find someone who specializes in creating the mechanics of a hearing aid as I have a pretty incredible idea….any advice?

  5. My 9 year old daughter has a blog where she teaches other children how to decorate their hearing aids cheaply and imaginatively. The blog is called zizisears.blogspot.co.uk There are lots of ideas for grown ups there as well, and detailed tutorials explaining how to turn jewellery into hearing aid decorations, and how to make decorations using simple materials such as Fimo, beads, and glitter.

  6. I have suddenly become obsessed with the hearing aid in the second photo. I have worn a hearing aid for most of my life, and I usually favor discreet designs. However, the Hummingbird is so colorful that I would mind people noticing. Do you have any pricing information, or a link to the manufacturer’s website?

  7. These are some really cool and very interesting hearing aids if I do say so myself. I have never seen hearing aids quite like them. In my opinion, the coolest ones would have to be the first ones that you showed how that guy could wear them as gauges or earrings. Those would be some really cool looking gauges that not very many people would know are actually hearing aids. Amazing design and great job on making them cool and unique like this.

  8. Love the Siemens vibe concept. Just because I am 70 doesn’t mean I am fashion crippled. Hate the prosthetic vibe of flesh colored models, but can’t yet find something trendy. How about chrome with a racing stripe!

  9. I’ve worn a hearing aid for over 40 years. It would be nice if someone invented one that’s like a jewelry piece.. or be a cover for exiting one.

    1. Hi Sylvia! That would be cool. We are publishing a blog post on 1/25 about how to DIY decorate your hearing aids, check back in then for our recommendations! Best, Audicus.

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