GN ReSound introduces first hearing aid that works with the iPhone

The humble hearing aid, which started out as nothing more than an an ear trumpet in the 17th century, has been bought into the modern age: the first hearing aid has been made for use with the iPhone.

The new device is capable of streaming high-quality stereo sound from Apple devices without the need for an additional pendant-like device, and combines with a mobile app to enable users to customise the sound they are hearing.

It has been produced by hearing aid technology company GN ReSound which claims the device is the first that connects with the iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch directly using a new chipset and Bluetooth technology.

The hearing aid has been made to stream music, phone calls, FaceTime calls and any sounds that can be played from the Apple devices, making the technology available to those who are hard of hearing.

It is intended to help give users of portable technology the ability to use it in the same way that those with perfect hearing can do. In theory the product can help users to connect with the latest technology and applications that they may not have been able to do while using conventional hearing aids.

The hearing device acts like wireless stereo headphones but also works as a conventional hearing aid. It has the potential to improve the hearing and lifestyles of those who have been unable to use the latest mobile phones and applications to enhance areas of their lives.

The smart hearing aid can also be controlled by the user’s mobile phone, allowing them to turn the volume up or down, adjust the bass and treble and more depending on the situation they find themselves in.

In one of its most revolutionary uses the hearing aid’s location can be found by the iPhone when it has been misplaced or lost.

ReSound’s CEO Lars Viksmoen said the company wanted to use their technology and combine it with the latest in mobile devices to help more people improve their hearing.

“We saw an opportunity to create the world’s best hearing aid by combining the capability of GN ReSound’s life-changing technologies with the compatibility and global prevalence of iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.

“We are committed to improving people’s lives through use of innovative technology and look forward to more people correcting their hearing with this new technology – a triumph in accessibility for the hearing impaired.”

GN ReSound is an international developer and manufacturer of hearing healthcare solutions.

Since its formation in 1943 it has been responsible for a number of hearing industry firsts including having the first system to eliminate howling and sound distortion.

You can find out more about the new hearing aid in the video below

Image and video courtesy of GN ReSound.

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg shares thoughts on future of internet at MWC

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg has told the Mobile World Congress that the company purchased WhatsApp to help with the shared vision of connecting everyone in the world.

Zuckerberg was keen to promote the growing movement that is, which aims to make the internet affordable and accessible to all.

The movement says that devices as well as service plans and data are too expensive for those who are not connected to the internet.

Zuckerberg told the Mobile World Congress, in Barcelona, Spain, that there’s a set of basic services that should exist for all, such as access to weather information and Wikipedia.

He highlighted that these are all mostly text-based services which can be provided by low data plans that do not need to expensive to the customer.

He said internet growth across the world was slower than most people think it has been and in order to be able to connect everyone in the world Facebook has to connect with a lot of companies to achieve this.

Speaking at the congress he said: “Most people in the world do not have access to the internet. It’s only about a third of people that have connection to the internet.”

When questioned on the longer term promise for the operator who would be providing this service alongside Facebook and other companies, he defended the scheme by saying that by providing a basic service it would show people how data plans are “rational and good for them” and would increase their internet consumption and knowledge of the world.

He was speaking  just days after his company completed the acquisition of social messaging service WhatsApp for $19bn and the first question put to him was about Facebook’s purchase of the company.

“WhatsApp is a great company and is a great fit for us. It’s the most engaging app that we have ever seen existing on mobile so far,” Zuckerberg said.

“What we see is that WhatsApp is on a path to connecting more than a billion people.”

He said that he wanted to help WhatsApp with its dream of connecting everyone in the world.

Video still courtesy of Mobile World Live.