Advanced Bionics (AB) and Phonak announced today the introduction of the new Naída bimodal hearing solution featuring the Phonak Naída Link, the world’s first hearing aid offering full-bandwidth, bidirectional audio streaming with the Naída CI sound processor from AB. Using shared technology co-developed by AB and Phonak, the Naída devices are able to communicate with each other in a way no other hearing aid and cochlear implant combination can match.
“After years of combined efforts in audiology, R&D and product management, we are delivering a game changer in technology. Two Naída devices — a CI and hearing aid — can now use the same advanced automatic technology and stream the audio signal from one side to the other. This means they can respond and adjust the same way to changing listening situations, as if they are one system,” said Dr. Hans Mülder, Marketing Director at Phonak Communications AG. “It is very rewarding to see AB and Phonak delivering on the expectations that were raised when the two companies came together.”
By transmitting audio information as well as sharing automatic features, controls, and the wireless Roger system, the AB and Phonak Naída devices make it easier to hear with them together. Studies show that this provides a proven advantage for hearing in noise and greater listening comfort compared to using a cochlear implant and any other hearing aid.1,2
Approximately 40% to 60% of cochlear implant recipients are considered “bimodal”, which means they wear a hearing aid on one ear in combination with using a cochlear implant on the other.3 “This breakthrough in bimodal hearing means we can deliver better hearing to more people affected by significant hearing loss and that’s always our goal,” said Hansjuerg Emch, President of Advanced Bionics and Group Vice President of the Sonova Medical Division.
The Phonak Naída Link hearing aid will be available starting this summer in the United States and Europe.
1Veugen LC, Chalupper J, Snik AF, van Opstal AJ, Mens LH. (2016) Matching automatic gain control across devices in bimodal cochlear implant users. Ear and Hearing (2015 Dec 10, epub ahead of print)
2Advanced Bionics (2016) Adaptive Phonak Digital Bimodal Fitting Formula: Optimizing Hearing for Listeners with a Cochlear Implant and Contralateral Hearing Aid White Paper
3Dorman MF, Gifford RH. (2010) Combining acoustic and electric stimulation in the service of speech recognition. International Journal of Audiology 49(12): 912-919