Monday, June 8, 2009

NoizFree Bluetooth Beetle offers hands-free cell phone use...

I fit premium digital, open-fit, Behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aids on a family member a little over 4 years ago. At the time, her hearing aids were the best technology available and she has done very well with them. She inquired in the beginning of the year if it was time to upgrade her hearing aids. Seeing as how she had chosen premium technology (as recommended) when she was originally fit, they were still working well, her hearing was stable, and she had had no problems with them, I felt upgrading them was not going to give her much better function over what she was currently experiencing, so I advised she hold off for a year or two.

I recently was introduced to a device that allows my family member to use her existing hearing aids as a Bluetooth-compatible headset, using her existing hearing aids with a t-coil (also known as a telecoil, or telephone switch). This device is called the NoizFree Bluetooth Beetle. By 'pairing' her cell phone (which is a relatively basic, 3-year old LG cell phone) with the Bluetooth Beetle and utilizing her t-coil in her hearing aids, she has a great hands-free listening system which she is able to hearing through either one or both her hearing aids, whichever she chooses. It is a fairly discreet system, as compared to the large, over-the-ear, blue, flashing devices more common in Bluetooth headsets. Better yet, for around $175, she has a system that works with her hearing aids, all without having to buy new hearing aids right now.

Not being very tech-y, she had to spend a day or so practicing with it, but now, she is a pro! It's easy to use. I would say that the average person that can scroll through the menu options on their cell phones can probably use the Beetle without any trouble at all. It works with any t-coil enabled hearing aid(s) and can be paired to any cell phone with Bluetooth capability, which most are anyway. We are currently looking at options for her to use her iPod and other devices. Until then, she has been thrilled to use her cell-phone hands free (and I'm sure the other drivers are appreciative, too!)

For more information, please contact me. I'd love to help you utilize your hearing aids to their fullest with the addition of this neat little accessory. If you're unsure if your hearing aid has a t-coil, just ask-we'd be glad to take a look and let you know.

A new thing for Coastal Audiology, Inc.

I have blogged in the past, but not for my business. This blog is a new thing for me. I'm hoping to let current and prospective patients know about audiology and hearing related topics via this blog. I encourage comments and hope you find the information useful. If you have tips or suggestions, please do not hesitate to let me know. Please email me at my work address: dawn@coastalaudiology.com

Please check back soon for the official first 'real' entry!