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Hearing aid apps offer a convenient way for people to adjust their Bluetooth hearing aid settings and receive advice and support from manufacturers. Some hearing aid apps may even help amplify sound without the need for hearing aids.
A quick look at the 5 best hearing aid apps
- Best for MDHearing CORE hearing aids: MDHearing Test and Hearing Aid
- Best for Signia hearing aids: Signia app
- Best for Starkey Livio hearing aids: Starkey Thrive Hearing Control
- Best for ReSound hearing aids: ReSound Smart
- Best for Oticon hearing aids: Oticon ON
This article discusses what hearing aid apps are, who may benefit from them, a list of these apps, and why hearing is important to health.
There are several hearing aid apps that individuals can use with their hearing aids.
The following table provides a direct comparison between the hearing aids in this article.
|MDHearing Hearing Test and Hearing Aid||Signia app||Starkey Thrive Hearing Control||ReSound Smart||Oticon ON|
|Compatible hearing aids||MDHearing CORE||Signia hearing aids||Starkey Livio||ReSound hearing aids||Oticon hearing aids|
|Platforms||iOS and Android||iOS and Android||iOS and Android||iOS and Android||iOS and Android|
|Features||• free hearing test|
• easy-to-read format
• “find my device”
|• manage programs|
• manage audio
• battery life status
|• automatic profile adjustment|
• mask mode
• battery life status
• sound enhancer adjustments
|• tinnitus relief|
• “find my device”
Please note that the writer of this article has not tried these products. All information presented is purely research-based and correct at the time of publication.
Medical News Today follows a strict product selection and vetting process. Learn more here.
Best for MDHearingAid CORE hearing aids: MDHearing Hearing Test and Hearing Aid
MDHearing provides nonprescription hearing aids that a person can purchase via its website.
Learn more about MDHearing hearing aids here.
The company offers a hearing aid app, but it is only compatible with its MdHearingAid CORE product. The app is compatible with iOS version 10 and above and Android devices with version 5 or higher.
MDHearing states its app is suitable for everyone, with large text and a simple layout. There is also a tutorial section and a tool that allows a person to set personal hearing goals.
This app is free to download and does not require a subscription.
Other features of the MDHearing app include:
- free hearing test
- customizable programs for each ear
- volume control
- listening program control
- battery level monitor
- remote assistance from specialists
- tutorial section
- “find my device” feature
Best for Signia hearing aids: Signia app
The Signia app is compatible with most of the company’s hearing aid devices. It is compatible with Android version 7 and higher and iOS version 11 and above.
Learn more about Signia hearing aids here.
The app features a Signia Assistant, which offers 24/7 support, answers common questions from users, and helps personalize settings.
The Signia app is free to download and use.
Other features of this app include:
- mask mode
- program and volume control
- sound balance adjustment
- battery life status
- managing audio streaming accessories
- virtual appointments or texts with hearing care professionals
- hearing lessons
- adjust tinnitus therapy signal
- adjust directionality of the microphone
Best for Starkey Livio hearing aids: Starkey Thrive Hearing Control
Starkey features several apps, but its Thrive app reportedly has the most features. It is compatible with Starkey’s Livio range of hearing aids and can run on iOS 14 or higher and Android version 7 and above.
Learn more about Starkey hearing aids here.
Starkey states that this free app is easy to set up, use, and navigate.
Features of the Starkey Thrive Hearing Control app include:
- volume controls
- allowing users to switch between memories and programs
- geotagging places, so devices automatically adjust their settings depending on location
- Thrive Assistant to help answer questions
- mask mode to help understand those wearing masks
- automatically sending fall detection alerts to a nominated contact
- language translation feature
- transcription feature
- find my device feature
Best for ReSound hearing aids: ReSound Smart
The Smart app by ReSound is free to download and compatible with six of ReSound’s hearing aids. Apple devices must be running on iOS 12 or later, while Android devices must be on version 8 or above.
Learn more about ReSound hearing aids here.
ReSound states that everything a person needs on the app is accessible via the home screen for quick and more user-friendly functioning.
Other features of the ReSound Smart app include:
- program control
- volume control, including a mute option
- sound enhancer adjustments
- personalized settings and programs
- battery life monitoring
- tinnitus management
- saving settings for specific locations
- find my hearing aids feature
- audio streaming
- support from hearing care professionals
Best for Oticon hearing aids: Oticon ON
Oticon’s ON app is compatible with all of the company’s Bluetooth hearing aid devices. It is available on iOS version 13 and higher and Android devices running version 8 and higher.
To use this app, a person needs to create an account with Oticon and create an “If This Then That” account, which provides a third-party service that Oticon uses within the app.
This app is free to download and use.
Other features of the Oticon ON app include:
- volume and program control
- audio-streaming and streaming equalizer
- find my device feature
- HearingFitness feature, which measures daily hearing aid usage and creates personalized goals
- low battery notification
- tinnitus relief feature
Hearing aid apps usually connect with a range of smart devices via Bluetooth to allow individuals to control hearing aid features such as volume and sound profile programs. A person who uses a hearing aid may use different programs when they are in different environments, such as a quiet room or a stadium. Apps can also indicate to a person the battery life of the hearing aids.
As the hearing aid devices usually connect to the app via Bluetooth, the apps can also connect directly to compatible devices such as televisions, computers, and phones.
People can also use some apps to contact a hearing care professional directly.
Other hearing aid apps, such as amplifier apps, may help individuals who believe they have a form of hearing loss. A person can use their earphones or headphones with these apps to pick up and amplify sounds.
However, people should not use these apps as a replacement for hearing aids. Amplifiers make noises louder, while audiologists program hearing aids to suit each individual. Amplifiers may be more suitable for those who require louder noises during recreational activities, such as birdwatching.
Apple products also have hearing accessibility features, having worked with hearing aid manufacturers to create Made for iPhone hearing aids. They may also include a feature where individuals upload their audiograms or undergo a series of hearing tests to turn certain headphones into hearing aids.
People can download hearing aid apps directly from Google Play or the App Store. The app will provide instructions on connecting any compatible devices and setting the app up for use.
A hearing aid user with a compatible smartphone may benefit from these apps, as they can use them to adjust hearing aid volume and other settings. Additionally, apps can allow people to use their hearing aid as phone receivers, while others can amend hearing programs through the app.
However, if a hearing aid user does not have a smartphone, they will not be able to use a hearing aid app. Additionally, many apps require a particular smartphone software version, meaning certain older smartphone models are not compatible with some apps.
With this in mind, it is vital to protect hearing. The
- avoiding noisy places
- using protective hearing devices when in loud environments
- keeping the volume down when listening through earbuds or headphones
- having regular check-ups with a doctor
Individuals should consult a doctor for hearing loss if they experience the
- having difficulty hearing over the phone
- finding it difficult to follow conversations when two or more people are talking
- having to ask people to repeat what they are saying
- needing to turn up the TV to a higher volume than normal
- finding it difficult to hear if there is background noise
- hearing another person’s speech as a mumble
- ringing in the ears
- experiencing hypersensitivity to sound
If a person does have hearing loss, there are various hearing aid devices available that are suitable for most levels and types of hearing loss.
Various hearing aid apps are available to download on a person’s smartphone. Most hearing aid suppliers have their own versions of apps that are compatible with their hearing aid devices.
Features on hearing aid apps vary, so a person may wish to consider all brands and features before purchasing a hearing aid device.
Please note: Medical News Today does not imply warranty of fitness for a particular purpose or endorse any of these applications. These apps have not been evaluated for medical accuracy by Medical News Today. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved them unless otherwise indicated.