Resolved IOS 13 issue with cochlear implants

revmacian

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Oct 20, 2018
1,106
910
USA
I am a bilateral cochlear implant recipient and have been using my iPhones for streaming content to my cochlear implants. This was working perfectly until upgrading to iOS 13.1 - it seems that some changes were made within the MFI Hearing Device functionality of iOS 13.1 that causes volume, settings and streaming issues with Nucleus 7 sound processors. I have seen, on other forums, that some hearing aid wearers are experiencing similar issues with their hearing devices.

I have been informed by a fellow cochlear implant recipient that Cochlear Americas is currently working with Apple to resolve these issues.

If you need to send Apple feedback about your experiences, you can do so at the Apple Feedback website.

I’m posting this in case other implant recipients are wondering about CI issues with iOS 13.
 

revmacian

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Oct 20, 2018
1,106
910
USA
iOS 13.2.2 seems to have resolved this issue with using cochlear implants paired to the iPhone XR.
 

Clix Pix

macrumors demi-goddess
The same issues affected various models of the iPhone used by those who wear Bone-Anchored Hearing Aids (BAHAs), which I do. As it happened, I was just getting my new BAHA 5 devices when I saw messages on FB about the problem, but when my audiologist did the programming with me, they both connected just fine and I had no issues. A few days later Apple issued 13.2.2 and still no problems for me while others who had been experiencing them were reporting happily that their devices and streaming were working fine again. I'm loving the ability to stream my music from my iPhone to my BAHAs! Really cool!
 
  • Like
Reactions: revmacian

revmacian

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Oct 20, 2018
1,106
910
USA
The same issues affected various models of the iPhone used by those who wear Bone-Anchored Hearing Aids (BAHAs), which I do. As it happened, I was just getting my new BAHA 5 devices when I saw messages on FB about the problem, but when my audiologist did the programming with me, they both connected just fine and I had no issues. A few days later Apple issued 13.2.2 and still no problems for me while others who had been experiencing them were reporting happily that their devices and streaming were working fine again. I'm loving the ability to stream my music from my iPhone to my BAHAs! Really cool!
Yep, working great again. I'm so glad Apple works as hard as they do to have this type of functionality.
 

Clix Pix

macrumors demi-goddess
You and me both! My older BAHAs did not have BT functionality and so this has been a delightful new experience for me. Apple and Cochlear Americas have been working together to make their devices available to the hearing-impaired and it really does improve the quality of life!
 
  • Like
Reactions: revmacian

revmacian

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Oct 20, 2018
1,106
910
USA
You and me both! My older BAHAs did not have BT functionality and so this has been a delightful new experience for me. Apple and Cochlear Americas have been working together to make their devices available to the hearing-impaired and it really does improve the quality of life!
I wore BTE hearing aids for 20 years and they were horrible. But cochlear implants.. such an improvement!

My implants are from Cochlear Americas and I had them for about 6 months before I learned that they were made for iPhone. Once I paired them a whole new world opened up. I cannot hear normally on a phone, but with the BT connection I can make and receive phone calls from most people - except those with thick accents. I can watch videos now without the need for closed captioning and I'm learning more about music - music is difficult because it is such a dynamic signal.

Are you able to enjoy music? That's one area that many hearing-impaired people struggle with.

My only disappointment is batteries. 2 x 675 batteries on each side only last about 26 hours.. rechargeable last 20 hours.

Are you a Cochlear Family member? One of the benefits is a yearly cruise.
 

Clix Pix

macrumors demi-goddess
Yes, I'm a Cochlear volunteer (for the BAHA) and a Cochlear Family member, having been wearing the BAHA since 2001. I had first heard of them back when the company was still called Entific and when the FDA was still permitting just clinical trials in the US for bone-anchored hearing aid technology. At that time I had friends in England who already were wearing the BAHA and I was intrigued. In 2001 was my time to go to Johns Hopkins in Baltimore, which was one of the few places available then working with the BAHA, and after a CT scan and examination, was told I was an ideal candidate and we scheduled surgery.

The surgery wasn't as scary as one would think, and recovery was smooth and fairly quick so that I was back at work in a few days. I had to wait several months then for the screws to thoroughly osseointegrate before I could start actually wearing the sound processors. The day they were first snapped on to my head was one I will never forget. These things were truly life-changing.

The primary difference between the cochlear implant and the BAHA is that while you have actual wires inserted through the cochleas, I have two tiny titanium screws in the mastoid process on each side, which are then connected to another, longer screw which is called the abutment and which comes through the skin in order to serve as the connection point for the sound processors themselves. When I snap each BAHA on to the abutment screw, the sound is then sent straight through to the bone.

A couple of years later I was invited to participate in a clinical trial for the next model, the Divino, which I did, and after that replaced my first pair of BAHAs with that model. Somewhere along the line after that was when Entific was absorbed into Cochlear and the company expanded to be responsible for both cochlear implants and BAHAs, in addition to broadening the patient base for the BAHA as it was discovered that it could benefit people with single-sided deafness as well, and also just as I had said even before I began wearing them, that bilateral BAHAs were especially valuable for not just adults, but also children.

I love to talk about the BAHAs and when someone asks, "what's that on your head?" I'm happy to snap one off and show it to them, explain what it is and how it works and what makes it different from traditional hearing aids. I also explain the difference between the BAHA and the cochlear implant, as that can confuse people, too.

Batteries.....ah, yes, at times I feel as though my life is ruled by batteries! Batteries keep my hearing going, my iPhone going, my iPads going, my computers going..... LOL! I remember the 675 battery; used that in my traditional BTE bone-conduction hearing aid, I think. The BAHA Compacts, Divinos and BP100s all used size 13 batteries. Now the BAHA 5 uses teeny little 312 batteries. Fortunately the battery compartment on the new BAHAs is easier to manage, more accessible than the one in the BP100's, which I really disliked. I haven't gotten a good handle yet on the expected time they'll last, as I've only had both BAHAs since October 24th. It seems to be about a week or ten days, depending upon how much I've been streaming music! Also, since I live alone, at times I don't put my BAHAs on until I'm ready to leave the house for the day, so don't always wear them from the time I awaken to the time I go to bed.

I love music, and thankfully have always been able to enjoy it. My hearing loss is primarily conductive, so that for me, simple amplification pretty much opens up the spectrum of sound. I enjoy classical instrumental and vocal music, opera, pop, soul, jazz, blues, some rock, the Big Band era, etc., etc. -- pretty much anything! One problem I had at concerts with my BP100s was that they would start squawking and squealing when a soprano hit a high note or two, or an instrument did the same. I haven't been to a concert since I got these new ones so am really looking forward to seeing and hearing how they'll do, but I can already guess that they will be significantly better, as I haven't had any problems listening to recorded music at home or in the car, either with or without streaming.

I'm still marveling at the streaming thing. WOW!!! Years ago I had the accessory mic that plugged in with a Y-cord to both BAHAs and then plugged into my Sony Walkman (this was obviously a LONG time ago!) and I thought that was pretty cool. Then I eventually discovered bone conduction headphones, both wired and wireless, and have been using those for several years, and they're convenient because I can use them either with or without the BAHAs on my head. I now have the new Mini Mic 2 and the TV gizmo in order to have streaming from the TV and the computer, but haven't gotten around to setting those up yet; when I want to stream music into my BAHAs now, I just grab the iPhone, which is sitting right by me at the computer anyway.

Back in the days of landline phones I could use my old hearing aids and later my BAHAs to hear on the phone without much difficulty. In the old days with my hearing aids I had to use the built-in telecoil, which was accessed by the flick of a switch. With the BAHAs, no need for a telecoil any more. When I got the iPhone I realized that I can not only hear on the phone with my BAHA, of course, but also I can press the iPhone against my mastoid bone and hear quite nicely, too! The sound conducts quite nicely right into my head, too. This is convenient if someone happens to call at a time when I don't have my BAHAs on.

The technology we have today is just amazing and undoubtedly in the next several years there will be more developments to make our lives even easier and the sounds of the world more accessible.....
 
  • Like
Reactions: revmacian

revmacian

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Oct 20, 2018
1,106
910
USA
The technology we have today is just amazing and undoubtedly in the next several years there will be more developments to make our lives even easier and the sounds of the world more accessible.....
Thank you for the info, it helps me to better understand the BAHA. My CI surgery was outpatient for each ear and I was up and running in a couple days. A week later they activated my sound processors and I kept hearing something while I was trying to read the audiologist's lips. Then it occurred to me that I was hearing the audiologist's voice! I hadn't actually heard voices in years at that point and it sounded weird. Over the next few months I realized I was able to hear birds chirping, car horns and rain!

I remember the first time I heard rain with my CI's. I was sitting at my computer and kept hearing something. So, I got up and walked around the house, trying to identify the sound, until I came to my front door. I opened the door and noticed the sound got louder and it was raining. I just stood there asking myself "am I actually hearing.. rain?!"

But, my favorite part of having cochlear implants.. no more lip reading! Maybe I just never got good at it, but lip reading is horrible.

I have the Mini Mic 2 and the TV streamer - thank you, Cochlear Americas! You really should set those up, especially if you have a computer. I use the TV Streamer to stream the sound from videos on my MacBook Air directly to my CI's and it helps me to enjoy movies - see attached photo. You could even start an audiobook and move around the room while listening.

Yes, this technology is amazing! Cochlear Americas ROCKS!

Oh, and thank you for your service as a BAHA volunteer :)

IMG_0047.jpeg
 

Clix Pix

macrumors demi-goddess
Definitely your CI devices are life-changing for you! Wow, that must have been truly something, hearing again after so many years of not be able to do so.... I was six when I got my very first bone-conduction hearing aid, a Sonotone body aid with head band and oscillator. Without hearing aids I can hear some, just not completely or normally, and hearing speech without hearing aids is difficult so, yes, I was trained early-on in childhood to lipread and still depended upon that in conjunction with the hearing aids I wore through the years. Lip-reading is challenging because some words look the same on the lips and also not everyone enunciates clearly. Some people cover their lips with a mustache and beard, which REALLY makes lip-reading challenging! I can always tell, too, when someone is speaking English as a second language -- the muscles around the mouth and jaw move somewhat differently.

The day I was fitted with my bilateral BAHAs back in 2001 was fifty years after I had gotten that first body aid. What a difference! A friend was with me and she said later that the expression on my face when I was hearing bilaterally was one that mixed joy, astonishment, delight and a range of other emotions all together at once. The thing, though, that she noticed later even before I was aware of it, was that when we were walking down the hallway to the cafeteria to get some lunch before heading home, I was no longer looking intently at her most of the time rather than towards where I was going, and we were having a back-and-forth conversation. I could hear her regardless of which side of me she was walking, I didn't need to depend on lip-reading or automatically place myself so that the hearing aid would be on the correct ("better") side to pick up whatever she said.

At the vending machine in the cafeteria she talked to me as I was putting my money into the machine and making my choice, and I reflexively responded to her without needing to turn my head to see what she was saying. Even though the cafeteria was noisy, too, I was still able to hear and differentiate her voice, which had not been possible when I wore one bone conduction aid with all the sound pouring into the one side.

When we sat down to eat, she told me what she was observing and we were both amazed. Later when we got in the car to head home, when I started up the car, I almost immediately reached to lower the volume of the car radio -- and THAT was cool, too! Normally I don't play music in the car when I've got a passenger, but did turn a CD on a few minutes before arriving at our destination and explained that I wanted to test what the difference might be before the BAHAs and after I had them. I also could hear my friend so much better in the car, compared to the drive up, because now I had a sound processor on each side of my head instead of only one. Bilateral DOES make a difference!

Yeah, hearing rain is neat, isn't it? Thunder, too. Without the BAHAs I can hear it only when it's really, really loud. With them, I hear it when it is just starting to rumble. And the birds twittering and singing -- YES!! Even bees if one is standing in a garden among the plants and they are buzzing around the flowers..... Without amplification, I can hear a car horn if I'm standing or walking nearby but definitely when I've got my BAHAs on I realize just how loud they really are! Refrigerators are loud, too. People who are not hearing-impaired take all these sounds for granted, and they really don't realize how noisy the world actually is! :)

Yes, indeed, I have a computer -- 15" MacBook Pro -- and I'm thinking I'll set the Mini Mic 2 up with it for streaming the music and video sounds here. I also have a 12" MacBook for travel and will continue to use the bone conduction Shokz headphones with that machine. I don't watch much TV but do want to get the TV streamer set up because I'm in a condominium apartment and the TV is in the bedroom. Now I'll be able to have the TV set at a volume which is really comfortable for me without worrying about disturbing the neighbors above me or below me! Ditto for when I'm out in the living room listening to music or watching a movie on my computer.....

Yes, one thing I love about streaming with my iPhone is that I can have the iPhone in my pocket and walk all over the house and enjoy the music -- wow! I've even gone for a walk to the kiosk mailbox doing that, just because I can, and it's neat, a whole new experience. My wireless Shokz headphones lose connectivity when I go out of range of the computer when I'm using it with them; presumably the Mini Mic 2 will do the same, but maybe it has a greater range. I'll know once I get the thing set up!
 
  • Like
Reactions: revmacian

revmacian

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Oct 20, 2018
1,106
910
USA
Definitely your CI devices are life-changing for you! Wow, that must have been truly something, hearing again after so many years of not be able to do so.... I was six when I got my very first bone-conduction hearing aid, a Sonotone body aid with head band and oscillator. Without hearing aids I can hear some, just not completely or normally, and hearing speech without hearing aids is difficult so, yes, I was trained early-on in childhood to lipread and still depended upon that in conjunction with the hearing aids I wore through the years. Lip-reading is challenging because some words look the same on the lips and also not everyone enunciates clearly. Some people cover their lips with a mustache and beard, which REALLY makes lip-reading challenging! I can always tell, too, when someone is speaking English as a second language -- the muscles around the mouth and jaw move somewhat differently.

The day I was fitted with my bilateral BAHAs back in 2001 was fifty years after I had gotten that first body aid. What a difference! A friend was with me and she said later that the expression on my face when I was hearing bilaterally was one that mixed joy, astonishment, delight and a range of other emotions all together at once. The thing, though, that she noticed later even before I was aware of it, was that when we were walking down the hallway to the cafeteria to get some lunch before heading home, I was no longer looking intently at her most of the time rather than towards where I was going, and we were having a back-and-forth conversation. I could hear her regardless of which side of me she was walking, I didn't need to depend on lip-reading or automatically place myself so that the hearing aid would be on the correct ("better") side to pick up whatever she said.

At the vending machine in the cafeteria she talked to me as I was putting my money into the machine and making my choice, and I reflexively responded to her without needing to turn my head to see what she was saying. Even though the cafeteria was noisy, too, I was still able to hear and differentiate her voice, which had not been possible when I wore one bone conduction aid with all the sound pouring into the one side.

When we sat down to eat, she told me what she was observing and we were both amazed. Later when we got in the car to head home, when I started up the car, I almost immediately reached to lower the volume of the car radio -- and THAT was cool, too! Normally I don't play music in the car when I've got a passenger, but did turn a CD on a few minutes before arriving at our destination and explained that I wanted to test what the difference might be before the BAHAs and after I had them. I also could hear my friend so much better in the car, compared to the drive up, because now I had a sound processor on each side of my head instead of only one. Bilateral DOES make a difference!

Yeah, hearing rain is neat, isn't it? Thunder, too. Without the BAHAs I can hear it only when it's really, really loud. With them, I hear it when it is just starting to rumble. And the birds twittering and singing -- YES!! Even bees if one is standing in a garden among the plants and they are buzzing around the flowers..... Without amplification, I can hear a car horn if I'm standing or walking nearby but definitely when I've got my BAHAs on I realize just how loud they really are! Refrigerators are loud, too. People who are not hearing-impaired take all these sounds for granted, and they really don't realize how noisy the world actually is! :)

Yes, indeed, I have a computer -- 15" MacBook Pro -- and I'm thinking I'll set the Mini Mic 2 up with it for streaming the music and video sounds here. I also have a 12" MacBook for travel and will continue to use the bone conduction Shokz headphones with that machine. I don't watch much TV but do want to get the TV streamer set up because I'm in a condominium apartment and the TV is in the bedroom. Now I'll be able to have the TV set at a volume which is really comfortable for me without worrying about disturbing the neighbors above me or below me! Ditto for when I'm out in the living room listening to music or watching a movie on my computer.....

Yes, one thing I love about streaming with my iPhone is that I can have the iPhone in my pocket and walk all over the house and enjoy the music -- wow! I've even gone for a walk to the kiosk mailbox doing that, just because I can, and it's neat, a whole new experience. My wireless Shokz headphones lose connectivity when I go out of range of the computer when I'm using it with them; presumably the Mini Mic 2 will do the same, but maybe it has a greater range. I'll know once I get the thing set up!
Wow, your friend was so smart and nice to watch and evaluate things like that.. she deserves a pat on the back. Yes, bilateral does make a difference, especially with locating sound. And, I'm glad to know that I'm not that only one who is challenged by lip reading.. I never liked it.

I suffer from profound sensorineural hearing loss (noise damage from the military), so many of the test frequencies were below the test range on my audiogram. They waited 6 months between implants because they weren't sure the first implant would bring me any benefit. Luckily, with both implants, they were able to bring my profound loss up to a mild loss.

Yes, the Mini Mic 2 and TV Streamer will lose connectivity if you venture outside their range. But, they will reconnect if you re-enter their range inside of 5 minutes. And, you are correct, the range is greater with the TV Streamer. I've even been able to reconnect on the second floor of my house when I'm in the room right above the streamer. You can even turn the TV Streamer on and off with your iPhone!

Wow, those Shokz headphones are awesome, so glad you can benefit from them.
 

Clix Pix

macrumors demi-goddess
Sadly, my friend has since passed away, and I still miss her. We did a lot of things together and I think she had developed the habit of automatically facing me and/or looking in my direction when she spoke to me, and that probably made it more apparent to her when there was a sudden change. Earlier that morning we had walked together up that same hall and I was constantly looking at her, catching what she was saying with both my eyes and my one hearing aid; walking down the hall a couple of hours later the difference was strikingly apparent to her right off the bat even though I didn't realize it myself.

Because I knew right off the bat that two BAHAs would benefit me and the surgeon agreed (as did the insurance company, thank goodness!) I had outpatient surgery with the implants being done on both sides. My friend was with me that day, too, and afterward she drove us back to her house, where I spent the night. We were surprised at how good I felt after the surgery, as everyone had thought that I'd be groggy and maybe in some discomfort, but that was not the case at all. The next day I was perfectly fine to drive myself back to my own place. The surgery was in April and I had the BAHAs fitted in July, to allow plenty of time for the osseointegration process. Nowadays Cochlear also offers a magnetic fixture that one can use rather than the abutment, and the recovery process from that does not take as long. I don't think it is as effective as the abutment and screw system, though, as again the sound would really be passing more through the skin and layers of tissue than it does with the abutments/screws right in the bone.

That is amazing that the cochlear implants were able to bring your profound hearing loss up to the level of mild hearing loss -- wow! Also, being post-lingually deafened, you would also have the advantage of having already heard from childhood, acquiring language and speech skills, etc., and so this would be even more beneficial to you than to those who are born profoundly deaf who have never heard speech.

Tomorrow is supposed to be cold and nasty weather-wise around here so I'm planning to stay at home and get some things done; it would be a good time to also set up my new devices and connect them to the computer and the TV!
 
  • Like
Reactions: revmacian