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Apple has partnered with hearing implants company Cochlear to launch the first made for iPhone Cochlear implant, which can stream audio from a compatible iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch directly to a surgically embedded sound processor (via TechCrunch). Cochlear implants are reserved for people with profound hearing loss that traditional hearing aids can't help to alleviate, and consist of both an internal and external component.

Thanks to the Apple-approved certification, patients can control the Cochlear implant directly from their Apple device and not have to download and launch a separate iOS app. Users can navigate to their iPhone Settings app, click General, and then Accessibility, and find their the Cochlear hearing implant -- with a Nucleus 7 Sound Processor -- listed for them under "hearing devices."

cochlear-iphone.jpg
Image via TechCrunch

"The approval of the Nucleus 7 Sound Processor is a turning point for people with hearing loss, opening the door for them to make phone calls, listen to music in high-quality stereo sound, watch videos and have FaceTime calls streamed directly to their Cochlear implant," Cochlear CEO Chris Smith said in a statement. "This new sound processor builds on our long-standing commitment to help more people with hearing loss connect with others and live a full life."
After being paired, users can control the implant's volume using their iOS device's volume controls, and any audio can be sent into the implant including phone calls and music playback. In addition, the external component of the Nucleus 7 is said to have a longer battery while being smaller and 24 percent lighter than the previous version of the device.

There have been other audio-assisting technologies that Apple has showcased in the past, like the ReSound LiNX 3D hearing aid, and speaking with TechCrunch the company reiterated its intent to push accessibility features in every version of iOS.
"We wanted to see something that could become ubiquitous out in the world," Apple's Sarah Herrlinger, senior manager for global accessibility policy and initiatives told TechCrunch. "We want everybody to use our technology and to say 'wow my iPhone is the best piece of technology I've ever used before'...with every iteration of our operating system our goal is to add in new accessibility features in order to expand the support that we can give to people all over the world."
In celebration of Global Accessibility Awareness Day this year, Apple held a concert at One Infinite Loop with headliner Stevie Wonder performing for employees during the event. Following the release of a collection of accessibility-focused "designed for" videos, CEO Tim Cook sat down and talked about macOS and iOS accessibility features with YouTubers who use these features daily.

Article Link: Apple Partners With Cochlear to Launch First Made for iPhone Hearing Implant
 

ignatius345

macrumors 68040
Aug 20, 2015
3,965
5,466
10 years from now, this will be perfect for all the people you hear blasting music into their ears at top volume. They can just pair a new device with their iPhone and they'll be all set!
 

danfrumkin

macrumors newbie
Aug 1, 2011
22
5
I have spoken to an audiologist about the made for iphone hearing aids. She said that for those who like them they provide enormous flexibility. Seems like this will provide some of the same potential life improvement for those with implants.
 

QuarterSwede

macrumors G3
Oct 1, 2005
9,558
1,660
Colorado Springs, CO
This is awesome! My sister got a cochlear implant earlier this year in one side and it has already improved her hearing by double; she can now hear high pitched bells which she had previously lost for a decade. She has a degenerative hearing loss and she uses an iPhone 6S. Definitely forwarding this article to her.
 

4jasontv

macrumors 601
Jul 31, 2011
4,987
5,926
I was under the impression that Cochlear implants were most effective when the recipient was very young. They are also perminant. Let's hope these devices have at least an 80 year support cycle.
 

Nixie1972

macrumors newbie
May 19, 2010
15
3
I was under the impression that Cochlear implants were most effective when the recipient was very young. They are also perminant. Let's hope these devices have at least an 80 year support cycle.
Only the internal part should last that long. The external parts: the processes that is worn behind the ear and the magnetic contact can be exchanged when needed. As all processing and connectivity is in this external part upgrade cycles are no problem.

CI's are effective with people who have minimal or no residual hearing. The operation to instert the internal parts into the ear destroys all remaining natural hearing. This is not age specific.
For young children being able to hear sounds is very important for development of language and social skills and preserving the hearing capabilities by stimulating the hearing organs, nerves and related parts of the brain. However, this is not specific to hearing loss at the level that requires a CI, but applies lower levels of hearing loss too that can be compensated by "regular" hearing aids.
 

Shariirey

macrumors newbie
Jul 27, 2017
1
0
I was under the impression that Cochlear implants were most effective when the recipient was very young. They are also perminant. Let's hope these devices have at least an 80 year support cycle.
I got mine at 68, after wearing hearing aids for 30+ years. A 30-year support cycle will be fine with me.
 
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