‘Made-for-Android’ hearing aids
- Please read this page in conjunction with this link: Made for iPhone Hearing Aids
Firstly, there is no such thing as ‘made-for-Android‘ hearing aids – because hearing aids that have been developed to operate on Android platforms can also work on all other mobile phone platforms (iPhone, Windows etc).
So, technically, this page deals with ‘Made-for-ALL (phone)’ hearing aids.
‘Made for ALL‘ (MFA) technology allows hearing aids to be directly connected to almost any mobile phone that has Bluetooth technology – without the need for an intermediary accessory (i.e. neckloop, clip-on)
The key benefits being:
- Remote control of the hearing aids via an app
- Streaming of phone calls and music, and also apps such as Google Maps
- Direct TV streaming (no neckloop or clip-on accessory required)
The alternative to MFA hearing aids is ‘MFi‘ – Made-for-iPhone – MFi is an Apple specific certification and allows hearing aids to work on the Apple operating system – more on MFi here.
MFA gives far greater flexibility of use for hearing aids across mobile phone platforms – therefore soon MFi hearing aids will likely be replaced by MFA hearing aids, as hearing aid manufacturers are aware that Android platform phones make up about 80% of the mobile phone market, and they must cater for this larger market.
Phonak and Unitron have both launched MFA ‘made-for-all-phone’ hearing aids
The launch of the Phonak Audeo Marvel is a game changer as it allows full binaural streaming to both hearing aids from almost ANY Bluetooth enabled phone (binaural being both hearing aids). Phonak Audeo-Direct and Unitron Moxi-ALL only stream to one ear. Streaming to both ears improves speech understanding and reduces listeneing fatigue.
Unitron will be releasing an upgrade to the Moxi ALL in May 2019.
Note: binaural phone streaming (to both aids) is a feature of Phonak Audeo Marvel – Phonak Audeo-Direct and Unitron Moxi-ALL only stream monaurally (to one aid).
Phonak Audeo Marvel (MFA) offers binaural streaming of phonecalls, audio-books, Facetime, music, and apps – direct to your BOTH hearing aids for improved speech clarity.
The key advantage of MFA over MFI is that MFA hearing aids allow you to answer phone-calls by pressing the button on the hearing aids, and then the hearing aids can relay your voice and the callers voice – so true hands-free calling. (MFi cannot do this). Note: this is only effective if the wearer of the hearing aids is not in a very noisy environment, otherwise the other caller will hear too much noise for a comfortable phone call.
All the above applies to compatible tablet devices too.
(To note: the way in which Phonak have cracked the ability to do this across a broad range of mobile phone platforms is to stream the phone signal to one aid, and then that hearing aid very rapidly streams the signal to the opposite aid. MFi hearing aids using the Apple protocol can stream calls direct to both hearing aids).
Direct high definition stereo streaming from TV’s without the need for a neckloop or clip on accessory
Must be done using a proprietary TV streamer as supplied by the brand of hearing aid worn – see TV streaming accessories here
These devices can make life at home so much more relaxing. All sold with 30 day money back guarantee.
Having more control allows you to fine tune your hearing aids in different environments to suit your needs – sometimes we can then fine tune them based on how you use your controls.
These functions will change between the phone apps provided by each manufacturer.
Basic remote control functionality may include:
- Volume control, synchronized or left / right separately
- Mute function
- Programme change – for different environments
You can also save your settings to a ‘favourite programme’ for future use, and can set that programme to turn on automatically when you reach a frequent destination (such as a surround sound programme for the local cinema).
At present it appears the remote control apps offered by ReSound and Widex for their MFi hearing aids offered much better control – see here.
Other App Benefits
An app by Phonak for Phonak Marvel
Keeping up with conversations can be really tricky, particularly in noisy environments. The Phonak myCall-to-Text transcribes real-time conversations and presents them as a text directly to the wearer’s phone. It means wearers can communicate with anyone, any time, anywhere without worrying about missing out on the conversation. The myCall-to-Text app is enabled in an incredible 80 languages! More info here
You can also use more advanced features such as foreign speech translator apps to hear what a foreign person is saying direct in your hearing aids!!
Bluetooth connection problems
MFA hearing aids work differently to MFi hearing aids.
MFA connect to the app for remote control use by low energy Bluetooth technology (BLE), but they connect for mobile phone streaming via the older classic Bluetooth technology, which is found in the phones general Bluetooth settings.
This can cause conflict with other Bluetooth devices that may be paired with the phone, such as built-in car Bluetooth kits.
More client feedback is needed on this issue.
For the slightly older Phonak Audeo Direct and Unitron Moxi-ALL hearing aids.
These hearing aids only stream from mobile phones to one hearing aid / ear – listening with two ears improves speech understanding and reduces listening fatigue.
Note – they both stream to both ears using their proprietary TV streamers.
These are only supplied with a very basic mini-charger that does NOT hold extra charge for weekends away (as opposed to ReSound Quattro MFi hearing aids which can hold 4-5 days of full days charge).
Made for iPhone – Made for Android – Made for ANY PHONE!!!