The BeHear.ACCESS hearing amplification headset gains hyper-advanced hearing aid functionality
Alango Technologies, a leading independent supplier of DSP voice and audio enhancement software technologies for the communication industry, announced the release of a new, advanced version of its BeHear.ACCESS hearing amplification headset.
ACCESS is a hearable that provides personalized hearing amplification users can self-tune in real time via the companion app. ACCESS looks like a standard Bluetooth headset, but the device is powered by Alango Technologies proprietary audio enhancement and customization software, giving users hearing aid quality technology at a fraction of the cost. ACCESS belongs to the BeHear line of smart hearing amplifiers, designed to help those with mild-to-moderately-severe hearing loss hear better during face-to-face conversations, mobile and video calls, and when listening to music and sounds in nature.
This already sophisticated product received an upgrade that added hyper-advanced hearing aid functionality: 3 features that are normally found only in top-of-the-line hearing aids. Users can define the direction from which to amplify and clarify important sounds, as well as the extent to which they hear their own voice. Additionally, people with unilateral or “single-sided” hearing will benefit from new CROS/BiCROS functionality, which transfers sounds from the non-hearing side to the hearing ear.
Advanced hearing aid functionality: SoundFocus™ for better understanding of speech in noise
Difficulty understanding conversation in noisy environments is a widespread problem. Standard hearing amplifiers increase the volume of all sounds. SoundFocus, on the other hand, adds a new level of customization on top of the existing ACCESS background noise reduction feature. Users can now define which sounds will be amplified by choosing amongst three degrees of directionality:
- “Narrow” focuses in on sound directly in front of the user. This setting is best for one-on-one conversations, especially in noisy environments.
- “Wide” amplifies sound in a 180-degree half-circle in front of the wearer. It is useful when larger groups are conversing.
- “Omni” collects important sounds from all directions, suitable for example, when outdoors or at a concert.
Advanced hearing aid functionality: alleviating the “My Voice Echoes” perception
A typical downside of wearing any pair of earbuds is the “occlusion effect”; a perceived echo of your own voice when your ear canal is sealed. BeHear.ACCESS offers maximum comfort with a new feature in the W&H BeHear app that allows users to control how much of their own voice they hear.
Advanced hearing aid functionality: support for unilateral hearing (CROS/BiCROS)
Features correcting for unilateral hearing loss are typically found only in high-end hearing aids. Many people avoid using hearing aids due to their high cost, social stigma, difficulty in tuning them, etc. Implementing CROS/BiCROS in BeHear.ACCESS provides those with single-sided hearing the ability to choose this hearable, rather than being limited to hearing aids as a solution.
When activated, the function takes effect for all ACCESS hearing modes: Personal Hearing, Mobile Calls, and Audio Play. Sound from the non-hearing side is transferred to the speaker in the ear bud of the hearing ear. Streamed stereo audio is mixed automatically down to mono and reproduced in the functional ear, thus allowing people to enjoy the full sound spectrum without missing out on sounds that would have fallen on the damaged ear.
Technology can help overcome our bodies’ limitations
“Hearing well in noisy environments is always a challenge, but especially so for those with hearing loss,” says Dr. Alexander Goldin, Founder and CEO of Alango Technologies. “We are democratizing hearing, making even advanced features like CROS/BiCROS available in a hearable that is affordable and easy to use. This is deeply satisfying.”
About Alango Technologies
Alango Technologies, Ltd. has been developing sound enhancement technologies since 2002, selling over 60 million software licenses that improve the audio experience in automotive, entertainment, and smart home applications around the world. Realizing the importance and opportunity of combining the sound enhancement technology found in hearing aids with the advances and costs in the consumer electronics world, the Company is now using its field-proven expertise in sound technology to create products for personal hearing enhancement: the “BeHear” product line.
Also published online on MarketWatch.
“Quit yelling at the people in the supermarket for the wrong reasons,” says Mr. Berger after trying his new hearing device.
In this interesting BeHear NOW review Robert M. Berger provides his perspective on hearing aids, overpriced hearing devices, and explains why BeHear NOW fulfills his hearing requirements.
My hearing has been fading for several years and recently I began shopping for a fix. I was appalled at the pricing of established hearing aids but heard that the U.S. government was now allowing certain categories of hearing devices to be sold over the counter and the market responded with several offerings at various prices. After an investigation of the pros and cons of each, I selected the Wear & Hear brand because of the messages on their home site and they met the needs of my hearing problem which were:
- It must customize to an audiogram. WH tests you on their app and adjusts to the results.
- I wanted a device where I could fine tune the sound. WH does that.
- It must be rechargeable. No batteries. WH is rechargeable and gives you multiple warnings when the battery is low.
- I wanted it to adjust for different environments. WH does indoor, outdoor, crowds and music modes.
- I wanted easily adjustable volume. I don’t have to take the device out of my ear to adjust volume, it’s on the cord.
- Must have Bluetooth phone connections. Got that.
- I needed to afford it. Their price was right.
I should also add the videos on both the PC and phone were complete and easily understandable. Once set up, a nightly recharge next to my phone was all that was necessary. For me, I didn’t want to start experimenting at $2000-3000, when I could do as well for 10% of that investment. There is a 30-day return policy and good customer service.
I’m hearing things I haven’t heard for years, movies, TV, my turn signal, my grandchildren, other adults, conversations in Starbucks, music. I don’t blast the car radio with others in the car and the neighbors two counties away have quit complaining that my TV is too loud.
Everyone needs to make their own decision, but I feel that some of the higher priced devices are mostly markup, and in many cases obsolete technology that they have been selling for years.
So, as you can tell I am happy with it. I recommend you take a look at their website and see if it meets your needs. The website is the most informative and useful of any I visited. Good luck and quit yelling at the people in the supermarket for the wrong reasons.
A quality hearing device should not be a luxury!
That’s why we developed the BeHear NOW hearing amplification headset and made sure that, with all the advanced technology inside, it remains an affordable hearing device. BeHear NOW hearing amplifier helps to boost your hearing and works in four hearing modes. Wondering about the hearing device price? See that and more information on the BeHear NOW product page.
From the iPhone to BeHear: Why, as an audiologist, I decided to also become an engineer
Suhail explains his journey and how BeHear hearing technology bridges the gap between audiology and smartphone technology with an app that gives the user control over their hearing.
When the first iPhone was released, back in 2007, I envisioned a revolution in my field of audiology. If it would be possible to connect between the mobile phone and hearing aids, this could create new hearing technology and empower hearing aid users in a completely new way – instead of being completely dependent on the audiologist to tune their device, users could access some of the technological features and control their own hearing definitions.
The smartphone industry began to flourish, and it was obvious to me that, as a result, hearing rehabilitation and the hearing aid industry would forever change.
My name is Suhail Habib Allah and I am an audiologist. I am also an electrical engineer with a specialty in software programming. My dream was to bridge the gap between audiology and technology and develop a device that empowers the user with more control over their hearing while providing high-fidelity sound.
In 2015, I joined Alango Technologies and took a leading role in the development of the BeHear product line: hearables that provide cutting edge hearing technology at minimal effort for the user. BeHear hearing amplifiers are powerful, professional hearing enhancement solutions.
BeHear devices are a combination of a hearing amplification headset and a dedicated app that enables user control over sound definitions. The app walks the user through the set up and fine tuning of what he or she hears. Front end algorithms were incorporated to improve the SNR (Signal to Noise Ratio) in complex listening situations. Hearing mode presets were designed to help the user switch between different modes in real time.
The core of the app and the element on which the sound customization is based is our hearing test. Accurate hearing screening has always been the foundation of successful rehabilitation and device fitting, it’s no different for BeHear. Our innovation is putting a professional quality screening tool in the hands of the user. We knew that the customization capabilities would differentiate our offering. That’s why we invested a lot of time developing the hearing test, putting it through extensive field testing and fine tuning of capabilities before its release.
In the second stage of BeHear development, we worked on the fitting formula. Our goal was to deliver crystal clear, sharp sound, providing users a comfortable sound range, thus reducing listening strain and enabling comfortable use for extended periods of time.
We developed a fitting formula based on equalization of the of the loudness dynamic range across the frequency spectrum, giving more weight and emphasizing the high frequencies – especially in the region 2-4 KHz. This formula, combined with some of the company’s proprietary technology, resulted in an industry-disruptive assistive hearing device with clear advantages:
- high end sound enhancement features – the quality of a hearing aid in the form of an easy to adopt hearable;
- disrupting the process of getting a hearing rehabilitation device – reducing the timeframe between when a person recognizes that he or she needs hearing help and getting a device can be significant in preventing further hearing degradation, in addition to maintaining quality of life. The old, complex and prolonged process is replaced with a new streamlined option;
- gives the users more independence and control – this is important for emotional wellbeing!
- affordable – cost is known to be one of the significant barriers in adopting hearing aids. BeHear makes quality hearing accessible to all.
It’s been over a decade since I first began this journey. Learning to be an engineer as well as an audiologist enabled me to realize my vision of leveraging technology to create a new hearing experience. It also provided me the opportunity to play a significant role in the development of BeHear, which is making life sound better for people, worldwide.
Written by Suhail Habib Allah, BeHear Chief Audiologist
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March 2021 Newsletter
3 Things for You
♦ NEW PRODUCT offers surround sound on your shoulders! ♦ Hearing is believing – customer becomes advocate ♦ How to keep your ears young and your mind sharp ♦
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How to keep your ears young and your mind sharp
Did you know that hearing health impacts not only your physical, but also your emotional and mental wellbeing? Most people don’t realize how important, or how complex hearing is. It’s the one sense we just don’t think about.
We experience the richness of life through our ears and don’t even notice. If a grilled cheese sandwich doesn’t sizzle, it doesn’t arouse our appetite in the same way. When we want to describe a city as exciting, we tend to focus on the bustling crowd and the urban beat. For nature it’s the bubbling of a brook, chirping birds or rustling leaves.
Sound injects feeling into experiences that would otherwise be mute, flat, and distant.
When we truly understand how complex the hearing mechanism is, it is easier to understand why it is a good idea to make hearing health part of our self-care anti-aging regimen, to maintain mental and physical wellness.
Hearing loss and cognitive function are related. The correlation between untreated hearing loss and cognitive decline is well documented. Hearing loss makes social interaction more difficult, reduces the ability to connect with others, and often leads to isolation and decreased physical activity. This results in a marked decline in physical and even mental health. Recent research has uncovered that untreated hearing loss in mid-life is the most significant factor in the later onset of dementia(!).
This discovery is shocking, but it is also good news. Awareness of the significance of hearing health, coupled with the realization that hearing degradation is a natural part of life, is the first step to implementing mitigatory care.
The challenge is in overcoming the psychological and financial barriers to seeking care. 15% of the general population experience some level of hearing loss but because degradation is gradual, many don’t recognize the decline until it becomes serious. On average it takes 7 years from the moment a person accepts that he or she is experiencing hearing loss to the point where they start to seek treatment.
When hearing loss is ignored and left untreated, the auditory system is deprived of sound, resulting in subsequent atrophy of the auditory nerves and speech processing areas of the brain. In other words, untreated hearing loss goes beyond the ears to affect the brain itself. Unfortunately, technological solutions cannot fully compensate for the physical and mental capabilities which are lost when ears go untreated. Severe hearing loss needs to be treated with hearing aids or surgery, solutions that are both expensive and complicated.
So how can we attain the best possible hearing health and maintain a high quality of life, for as long as possible?
3 steps for keeping the ears young and the mind sharp
Step 1: Awareness
Understanding that hearing matters can help us protect ourselves and those we love. Try to notice if you or someone close to you frequently asks people to repeat themselves, has trouble making out conversations in noisy places, or gets frustrated trying to understand dialogue on TV.
Step 2: Prevention
Age-related hearing loss is something most of us will eventually experience ourselves or in someone close to us. Preventative care can help delay onset so it is a good idea to protect the ears whenever possible. Avoid environments that are extremely loud, especially when the volume remains intense over extended periods of time. But what if you are a factory worker? Or work in a bar? Prepare in advance! Use protective gear, a headset or earplugs. It’s better to be safe than sorry!
Step 3: Get hearing help early!
Implementing assistive hearing solutions sooner, rather than later, addresses hearing challenges when the problem is mild to moderate. This is a way to keep the ears young and the mind sharp and help avoid worse problems in the future. BeHear hearables for example, are hearing enhancement solutions that provide the audio quality of hearing aids at the price of competing hearables. BeHear’s sophisticated technology provides a customizable solution that enables the wearer to self-tune and control his or her own hearing without having to go through the complex and expensive process of getting a hearing aid.
Phone Conversations Are Now Clear for Both Parties
“I also find this to greatly help with TV listening.”
♦ We love hearing back from our customers about their experiences with our products. Of course, it is always wonderful to learn that your efforts have led to an improved quality of life for someone, but constructive feedback about how to improve our products is also welcome!
Neil Nedrow is a relatively new customer who shared his thoughts with us by completing our customer survey, and then adding comments in e-mail correspondence.
“In the past, I’ve had trouble understanding people in phone conversations. But BeHear Now has completely eliminated that problem. And everyone has been able to hear me clearly. This is something I highly value. It works excellently. I also find this to greatly help with TV listening. I use the transmitter with headphones and the comprehension is quite good.”
It works excellently. – Neil Nedrow, Satisfied Customer
- Run the earpiece wires from the back part of the device on each side below and slightly behind the ears. That would keep them away from the face.
- Put a magnet at the bottom of each controller piece (where the earpiece wires are currently located) so it would be easier to find at you throat. I’ve taped magnets there and it’s helpful as it keeps everything in place.
“I also think there is a market for people who have some hearing loss who love listening to music and would like a device that would compensate for their hearing loss. Just for listening to music and not as a ‘hearing aid’.”
Before Hearing Aids Try a Hearable
“Even when I was facing the computer instead of her, she could hear me!”
♦ Although Lori Cunningham, an editor at the WellConnectedMom.com Web site, doesn’t have hearing loss, her mother-in-law does.
Lori decided to review the BeHear NOW personalizable hearing amplifier, testing this “hearable” out on her mother-in-law.
Lori reports “I wasn’t sure if the BeHear NOW hearable would work with my mother-in-law. She already has hearing aids and yet we still struggle in our attempts for her to hear us.”
“As BeHear NOW is designed for those with mild-to-moderate hearing, I had my doubts. But I thought, if perhaps this hearable could work, it would be a blessing for both her and my family!”
I’ll never forget the day I put BeHear NOW in her ears. She immediately liked them. She could hear me clearly and the headset was so comfortable in her ears. – Lori Cunningham, Editor at WellConnectedMom.com
“Even when I was facing the computer instead of her, she could hear me! It was truly amazing.
And with the convenience factor built into BeHear NOW, she can wear the headset around her neck to have the earpieces close by.
If she’s at home, she doesn’t need them in her ears, but she can easily tuck the earpieces in her hears when the phone rings or when she goes outside and sees her neighbors.
It’s a convenience she’s never had before because she doesn’t do this with her $4,000 hearing aids that most often sit in their case.
Her hearing aids are uncomfortable, so she doesn’t wear them much. And sometimes, she’ll only wear one.”
Former Hearing Aid Wearer Thrilled with BeHear NOW
“I can honestly say it exceeds all my expectations.”
♦ The following are excerpts from a review posted by a customer on Amazon:
“I’m 90 years old and completely deaf in my right ear. My hearing loss in my left ear is rated as ‘moderate’ in the low frequency range and ‘severe’ in the higher frequencies, not unusual for a person my age.
When my 3-year-old Resound Hearing Aid stopped working I decided to search for a lower cost alternative. After many hours of research I zeroed in on the ‘BeHear Now’ device. Attracted by its reviews and apparent versatility, I ordered it through Amazon and received it 24 hours later.
‘BeHear Now’ is a viable and functional alternative to conventional $3000-$7000 hearing aids. It certainly is for me. – Ed Cornachio, Satisfied Customer
I read through the manual and watched each of the online tutorials. That was five days ago. Now I can honestly say it exceeds all my expectations.
I strongly recommend, however, that you download the W&H BeHear app and pair it with your cell phone via Bluetooth. The app allows for individual customization, adaptable to your specific hearing problem. For me, the app is more than just a convenient accessory. It’s a necessary addition to adapting to environmental differences.”
Reducing the Curse of Isolation for People with Hearing Loss
by Dr. Alexander Goldin
♦ Social isolation is a fundamental health-related problem. This excellent article gives a lot of information about how social isolation may be related to hearing loss.
In these turbulent times brought on by the COVID-19 virus, lives of people with disabilities may be even more difficult than usual. Hearing loss greatly limits our ability to communicate. People with hearing loss often utilize other channels of information, such as lip reading, body language, and other visual cues, or even the sense of touch, to compensate for the lack of information typically received from a healthy auditory system. These days, such people may require live, face-to-face interaction with others much more than people with normal hearing. Isolation caused by preventive measures against spreading the virus deprives them of those additional information channels. While some of them can live almost normal lives in good times, compulsory physical isolation may significantly and disproportionately exacerbate their problems. It is a well-known scientific fact that hearing loss is a major health factor leading to social isolation, depression, cognitive decline, and premature dementia. If the hearing loss is not addressed in a proper and timely fashion this process of decline can accelerate rapidly.
Traditionally, hearing loss has been treated through the use of hearing aids. However, with less than 20% of hearing-impaired people in the U.S. using hearing aids, we can surely say that hearing aids have failed to provide a comprehensive solution. This is, mainly, due to 4 main factors:
1. Price: Hearing aids are extremely expensive
2. Social stigma: People don’t like hearing aids, thinking they make them look older or handicapped.
3. Limited functionality: Basic hearing aids provide hearing amplification only. Today, the most expensive, top-of-the-line hearing aids allow the wearer to make phone calls, but the quality of sound and the frequency range is still far from perfect.
4. Time to set up and tune: Hearing aids are distributed and tuned by professionals, requiring between 4-7 visits to get them adjusted properly.
In today’s reality of limited mobility and closed or restricted access to audiology services, the fourth factor is becoming a real bottleneck, even if the first three problems are somehow resolved (e.g., if high end hearing aids are distributed for free and people don’t care about how they look). For many people there is simply no way to get help. Hearing loss is not considered a life-threatening condition. Of course, it is not, but the consequences of not treating it are. The situation may become critical as cognitive decline may happen quickly and irreversibly for elderly people. We’d better not wait until too late and try to get them help ASAP.
We feel that our BeHear line of Personalized Hearing Headsets provides a good, comprehensive, and timely solution for quickly getting help for hearing loss these days. These hearables provide an advanced, no compromise, yet affordable, easily-to-operate, and fully personalizable hearing solution. And the great news is that personalization of our hearing amplification headsets does not require any professional service. It can be done easily by the user or his/her friends or relatives through a simple, intuitive, and free smartphone application.
Our BeHear hearing amplification headsets address all aspects of voice communication:
1. These hearables resolve difficulties of face-to-face communication between people confined inside their homes. Being able to communicate with a hearing-impaired person without raising your voice or, from the impaired side, without asking the speaker to talk louder, clearer, etc., may greatly reduce otherwise quickly accelerating stress and mutual antagonism. BeHear hearing amplification headsets can be a family peace saving option in many such cases.
2. Many seniors are prevented from communicating in person with their families and are relying on phone conversations to stay in touch. For those with hearing loss it is more difficult to understand phone speech because they do not have the visual cues afforded by in-person conversation. Also, phone amplification options and the sound quality of modern phones are limited. The sound options of mobile phones may also not allow suitable personalization. BeHear hearing amplification headsets resolve these problems by enabling mobile phone calls with high quality sound which is optimized for the user’s specific hearing loss. They can even slow down the voices of fast talkers, making them more intelligible, without asking them to do so.
3. People are watching more television these days. Being able to comprehend TV dialogue at normal volumes will be appreciated by other house dwellers / neighbors. When used with HearLink PLUS transmitters, BeHear hearing amplification headsets work as top-quality TV listening systems with personalized sound.
4. Stress is a big problem for people confined to a small space. Quiet, calm music is a great relaxation tool when you can hear it as it was meant to be heard. Unfortunately, hearing impaired people are often deprived of this. Listening and enjoying quiet music requires good hearing. Otherwise, people either cannot hear it, or it is too loud. There is simply no comfortable listening level. BeHear hearing amplification headsets can help resolve this difficulty, allowing people to reduce their stress.
5. Hearing better with BeHear hearing amplification headsets can help people avoid panic (typically the physical representation of fear, which is a result of feeling helpless or lacking self-confidence). When a person can hear and understand the guidelines for keeping safe they will be calmer, overall.
Last but not least, things may be getting worse in some cases and people may need to rush to hospitals. Even people actively using hearing aids rarely take them to hospitals as they are afraid of losing or damaging their very expensive devices. People without hearing help will experience difficulties in communication with the hospital staff, thus receiving unclear or inadequate treatment. The communication challenges are compounded if the staff are wearing face masks, concealing the physical clues that are useful for comprehension, and taking into account the general background noise which characterizes emergency rooms and hospital wards during a pandemic.
This situation may further increase mental stress and eventually lead or contribute to a well-known disorder called “delirium”, an acute disturbance of mental abilities. We believe that hearables from Alango BeHear can provide a hearing enhancement solution that is affordable, durable, and easy-to-use in hospital conditions.
The earlier people get help, the faster they recover, and the less it costs us as individuals and society in general.
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“Outstanding Hearing Devices” Determines Tech Blogger
“There needs to be an increase in public awareness about alternative solutions to hearing enhancement, such as Wear & Hear.”
♦ Hillel Fuld is a global speaker, tech blogger, startup marketer, and leading online influencer. His work has been featured by CNBC, Forbes, Inc, Entrepreneur, TechCrunch, and many others. His latest column in “Hillel’s Tech Corner”, published weekly in The Jerusalem Post, focused on how Wear & Hear can alleviate added stress experienced by those with untreated hearing loss during the age of the Corona virus.
In his post, Mr. Fuld mentioned the effects the COVID-19 pandemic is having on our daily lives, focusing on various types of mental anguish. He noted:
One thing I recently came to realize is that stress levels are much higher for those who don’t hear well.
Mr. Fuld poses the question: “So now, in the age of COVID-19, when mobility and income are even more restrictive, can anything be done to assist those with hearing loss?” and comes to the conclusion that Alango Technologies, with our Wear & Hear products, have some great solutions.
…these devices resolve difficulties of face-to-face communication between people confined inside their homes. They also enable mobile phone calls with high quality sound optimized for the user’s specific hearing loss.
This can mean an end to at least some of the frustration experienced by those with untreated hearing loss, AND of those who want to communicate with them. He further notes:
FOR USERS, this means television can be watched at a volume acceptable to all housemates as there is no longer a need to crank up the volume in order to understand dialogue. Also, listening to calming music can be made pleasurable again, as the devices amplify notes that previously went unheard, to provide a richer listening experience.
There needs to be an increase in public awareness about alternative solutions to hearing enhancement, such as Wear & Hear. Hearing loss is natural and extremely common, and I feel we must collectively do our best to accommodate those with hearing loss by letting them know of their options in an effort to ease their frustrations in daily life.
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After 20 Years of Hearing Aids He Prefers BeHear NOW
“I want to thank and congratulate Alango on this extraordinary product. IT’S WHAT I’VE BEEN WAITING FOR YEARS.”
♦ The following are excerpts from a review posted by a customer on Amazon:
“Two weeks ago, with great satisfaction, I received my second BeHear NOW set (the first one for forgetting I left it in another city where I have not been able to return because of the restrictions of Covid-19).
I am 75 years old and about 20 using hearing aids because my current hearing loss is profound. Also, I am an electronics engineer, so I can say that I have good experience in the handling and evaluation of hearing aids from the patient’s point of view.
For example, about the last two years I have been looking, analyzing, and testing (when the few distributors allow it) various brands and ranges of hearing aids to replace my old pair that has about 7 years of use. The result is that I have not found one that meets my personal needs more than BeHear NOW. So, my honest review and conclusions about this product are as follows:
- PRICE: There is a huge price difference between most conventional brands, that are above the US$3600 for a mid-range hearing aid pair, and my BeHear NOW (they cost me US$200 plus shipping costs each set).
- DELIVERY TIME: 7 days in total, from the moment I placed the order and the product was ready to deliver to my door. Extraordinary, since it was sent from Israel to Bogota, Colombia, and considering the delays and problems in transport and customs generated by Covid 19 and the commercial inactivity of Easter week in my country. If I had made the purchase from a local dealer, I am sure that I had not yet received them and would not have a date of receipt, or less, of an appointment with a hearing care professional to adapt it.
- ADAPTATION: With all my respect to hearing professionals, the process of adaptation with the test-and-error method used, in my case, has been traumatic and inefficient, perhaps due to the difficulty of accurately explaining what characteristics and defects the patient perceives with a particular graduation of his hearing aids. And when you go out to “the real world”, it’s a totally different situation! So, you must request another appointment for a new review and the time is passing and patience is running out and the famous and expensive hearing aids can end up in the drawer of a desk. Very different is the adaptation and adjustment process used by the BeHear NOW because the patient hearing evaluation and device graduation is made direct and easily by the patient himself using the application installed in his smartphone, in real time, for different environments and as many times and places he wants to do them, achieving the quality that often does not reach through an audiologist, regardless of his experience. Surely, this direct method will be the trend in the next future hearing aids if there are no contrary pressures to do it.
- LIVE CONVERSATIONS QUALITY: In my case, the quality and clarity of voice received directly from my BeHear NOW it´s not perfect, but does not have to envy anything to those of elegant brands. Specifically, I spent more than 10 months (all 2019) trying to get a decent understanding with my hearing aids from a famous and expensive brand, but I never got it; now they’re in the desk drawer.
- AUDIO FROM SMARTPHONE: Although some brands and ranges of hearing aids can now be connected by Bluetooth with iPhone smartphones, and very few with Android, my experience with BeHear NOW has been very satisfactory. After many years, now I can have phone conversations quite successfully (until now I used only WhatsApp written) and mainly, I have again listened stereo Bluetooth music with an extraordinary richness of sounds and tones. Switching among different devices or modes is smart and smooth. Besides, using the “HearLink” I can now directly listen to the TV with superior quality than with my heavy and uncomfortable Sennheiser HD 175 “over ears” system.
- DEVICE CONTROLS: I can control my BeHear directly from the headset controls, or with the app from my smartphone. Although initially it may seem uncomfortable to use the headset with cables at the back of the neck, with a week of use I easily manage the different controls, when it is not possible to use the smartphone app. Many models and brands only use one of the two control methods which is impractical as you don’t always have your phone handy or the manual controls are very confusing to use.
- BUDS COMFORT: With BeHear NOW you do not need to take molds to fit each hearset to your ears. Your BeHear package contents a variety of types and sizes of “ear buds” that easily adapts to the shape of your ear giving you total safety and comfort. You will not have surprise losses, discomfort or hassles due use them for long periods.
WHAT I’D LIKE TO HAVE ADDITIONAL
- REMOTE MICROPHONE: For conferences and presentations cases (and even in family or friendly meetings) it would be extremely useful to be able to use the smartphone as a remote microphone, or an external remote microphone. As I noted earlier, the quality of the audio coming from a smartphone is quite good. [Our remote microphone, called “YONA”, is already under development. Subscribe to our newsletter for updates on its release. – Ed.]
- EXTRA 5 DBs OUTPUT. In my case of deep loss only the “Indoor” mode is useful, with the other 3 modes I hardly hear them. Somebody from Alango Technologies Customers Service informed me that “this extra power could be implemented in some weeks” (I suppose that by some software trick). Welcome this function.
- LONGER BATTERY AUTONOMY. With my BeHear the maximum battery duration is about 8 hours, which is not enough in a normal journey. That’s a pity.”
I want to thank and congratulate Alango on this extraordinary product. IT’S WHAT I’VE BEEN WAITING FOR YEARS. – Jesus Campos M.
Joe Tomaso Reviews BeHear Assistive Hearing Headset
“They are so much better than traditional hearing aids.”
♦ In this 4-minute audio review, True Crimes podcast host Joe Tomaso (who suffers from hearing loss himself) packs in a lot of information. He brings anecdotes from his professional and personal lives to illustrate how much he likes the BeHear assistive hearing headsets. For example:
“As I’m hosting and doing production work and even editing my podcast, I am using both the BeHear ACCESS and the BeHear NOW personalized assistive hearing products. I have had traditional hearing aids and they cost me thousands of dollars. I also have used similar products that not only cost me a lot more than my BeHear devices, but they were big and clunky and not as comfortable. Also, they didn’t give me the personal hearing experience that matches BeHear.”
“My wife likes this as I’m not blasting the volume on the TV anymore.” – Joe Tomaso, True Crimes Podcast Host
“My BeHear devices are stylish and they help me hear better whether it’s live conversations, hearing better in public places, live music, cell phone calls or just listening to TV.”
“I really can’t say enough for these devices. Recently I was also able to hear birds chirping near sunrise. I have not been able to hear that sound even with my hearing aids and it’s not just what you can hear that counts. It’s what you’re missing out as well. I highly recommend these devices.”
Listen to Joe’s 4-minute review by clicking the link below:
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How W&H Has Changed Elisabeth’s Life
BeHear ACCESS Customer Shares Her Experience
♦ “The first time I truly understood the ACCESS actually works as advertised was during breakfast in the noisiest restaurant in town with friends. Midway through our meal, I realized that I was hearing the conversation just fine, and I felt my tension fall away as I relaxed and just enjoyed being with my friends.” ♦
“I am an 83-year old woman who has never worn hearing aids. When I had my hearing tested, the audiologist recommended hearing aids that cost $6,000, plus the cost of an iPhone, plus tax—roughly $7,300. I thought that was obscene! I went immediately to the internet and searched for alternatives. That’s how I found Wear & Hear. I learned that they were releasing a follow-up to the BeHear NOW, and I wanted to be one of their first customers.
It took a few months to receive my device [until the official release -Ed.], but it was worth the wait. The BeHear ACCESS is brilliant! My main problem was that my ear canal is so small I couldn’t use any combinations of the ear buds and hooks. Fearing that I wouldn’t be able to use the device, I contacted Wear & Hear and they responded immediately. Their technician suggested using it without buds or hooks. For me, that worked perfectly! I have not been self conscious about wearing it. Even people who knew I was going to be receiving the device ask me what I’m listening to. I say, “You.”
I discovered that the senior center where I attend an exercise class offers individual hearing loops, which enabled me to use Telecoil mode. I was surprised to be able to discern words in what had been mostly a wall of noise from the public address system.
The last time I attended a program at our local theatre, I heard about 20% of what the speaker said. I knew I couldn’t go back. After I received BeHear’s ACCESS, I contacted the theatre and was delighted to learn that they support Telecoil. I’ll be back!
My favorite feature is the [EasyListen -Ed.] Slow, Slower, Slowest settings with phone calls—so handy when you’re trying to listen to a fast talker! Next is ListenThrough. I have several friends who wear top-of-the-line hearing aids (we’re talking $6,000-$8,000), and they have nothing that is comparable. Most of them ask if I mind having something around my neck, and I tell them I don’t; in fact, I don’t even notice it except when the cords catch on my clothing. In any case, it’s a small inconvenience when you consider the price difference! I always point out that any high tech device is going to be obsolete in 6-12 months, and I can afford to buy a new BeHear device every year for the rest of my life for half of what one pair of high end hearing aids would cost in the first year. And, because it is rechargeable, I won’t be bothered with those pesky little batteries that die at exactly the wrong time.
One of the things I appreciate about Alango is that they have democratized hearing help by making the device compatible with an old version of Android (4.4) at a very affordable price. Their mission is to provide hearing technology to as many people as possible; however, they are not motivated solely by money—there is an altruistic element to what they are doing. To understand what I mean, everybody should read The Future Is Now: “How we can create an affordable, self-administered solution to hearing loss” with Dr. Alexander Goldin. ”
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Stylish, Over-the-Counter (OTC) Hearing Devices
“These headphones have good ergonomics.”
♦ Stewart Wolpin, a writer for Techlicious “Tech Made Simple”, recently included the BeHear ACCESS in his lineup of four new “Over the Counter” (also known as OTC) hearing devices.
As per the article, “Alango’s Wear & Hear BeHear ACCESS operate as regular behind-the-neck Bluetooth headphones, letting you listen to music, take calls, and adjust the volume of ambient sound. They also have a couple of OTC hearing aid extras.
If you have trouble following fast talkers or people with accents on phone calls, an EasyListen mode elongates consonants to remarkably improve comprehension. – Stewart Wolpin, Techlicious
“The BeHear Access are T-coil compliant, which means you’ll receive broadcasts directly to the headphones in loop-enabled public venues like theaters and churches. (You can tell by the ‘T’ designation on your program.)”
“And the headphones have good ergonomics: The headphone controls are extra-large, uniquely-shaped buttons you can control by feel, and there is a drop-in magnetic charger, so you don’t have to fiddle with tiny jacks and plugs.”
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How to Alleviate Unnecessary Stress for the Elderly During the Pandemic
The Most Vulnerable Age Group to Catch the Virus is Also the Group Most Likely to Suffer from Hearing Loss
♦ Getting sick enough to see a health professional during these days of the Corona virus pandemic is stressful in its own right, but inability to hear the staff’s diagnosis or treatment strategy because you left your hearing aids behind is truly frustrating. What can be done?
While not being directly related, there is a strong correlation between the severity of symptoms for people infected with COVID-19 and hearing loss rates for different age groups. Both worsen quickly with age. Logically, this leads to a direct link between the number people being infected and admitted to hospitals, and the number of hospital patients with high levels of hearing loss.
Hearing aids are very expensive devices that are easy to lose and easy to fall into disrepair. Few people take their hearing aids with them when they rush to noisy emergency rooms, eventually limiting their abilities to communicate with the hospital staff and get the proper treatment. Not being able to hear and understand the situation also contributes to a condition called “delirium” which is an acute disturbance of mental abilities. This hospital-induced delirium typically results from the combination of stress from poor health, disorientation from being in an unfamiliar environment with strangers, disruption of routine, and absence of familiar faces.
We believe that Alango Wear & Hear products can provide a hearing enhancement solution that is affordable, durable, and easy to use in hospital conditions. It is also multi-functional, allowing patients to better understand the medical staff, communicate over the phone, enjoy music, and watch TV.
For example, BeHear® ACCESS is a stylish hearing amplifier for people who need enhanced hearing in specific situations. It looks (and functions) like a typical Bluetooth® stereo headset but also provides enhancement for all-around hearing (live conversations, mobile phone calls, music play, ambient hearing), as well as assistive listening functionality. A dedicated free smartphone app allows wearers to fine-tune sound in real-time, and built-in Telecoil receivers ensure best possible hearing in locales equipped with hearing loop technology.
The BeHear ACCESS headset can be paired with HearLink® PLUS, a Bluetooth® transmitter that streams audio directly from the television’s analog or digital (optical) sound source to the viewers ears. Ambient noises, room reverberation, and other types of sound interference which hamper intelligibility of speech and music appreciation are eliminated. Other residents of the hospital ward (or household) will appreciate the fact that the TV volume doesn’t disturb them. The transmitter pairs seamlessly with Wear & Hear assistive hearing headsets, ensuring that each viewer benefits from personalized audio that can be fine-tuned in real-time using the dedicated W&H BeHear smartphone app.
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Tech Expert “Ask Dave Taylor” Reviews BeHear ACCESS
“Good as Audio Headphones but Pretty Darn Amazing with Assistive Hearing”
♦ Tech expert Dave Taylor of https://www.AskDaveTaylor.com/ tried out the BeHear Access and found them to be good as audio headphones but pretty darn amazing with assistive hearing. Among its many features are easy charging, long battery life and full support for telecoil.
Hearing aids don’t have to look clunky and cost thousands of dollars if you only have mild to medium hearing loss. Just pair the amazing BeHear Access Assistive Hearing Aid Headphones to your smartphone. Then you can run a simple hearing test and have the BeHear Access automatically adjust for your actual hearing loss across the frequency spectrum. – Dave Taylor, Tech Expert
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