By Alexandra Burlacu email: firstname.lastname@example.org | Jan 13, 2013 12:44 PM EST
Siemens' Aquaris hearing aid made some waves this year at CES, and the International CES Innovations 2013 Design and Engineering Honoree speaks for itself.
A lot of people who are deaf or hearing impaired struggle daily with a lot of challenges, but Siemens aims to offer a solution to at least some of those challenges. The company showcased its new Aquaris hearing aid at this year's International CES tech fest in Las Vegas and has certainly drawn some attention.
First of all, the Aquaris hearing aid is the first and only one of its kind to receive an IP68 rating for continuous submersion underwater - to three feet. The accessory is also dust- and shock-proof, allowing users to engage in a wider range of activities. In addition, the Aquaris hearing aid is also equipped with Bluetooth, allowing users to listen to music even when underwater.
Users can connect the device to a Bluetooth remote called Minitech. The remote streams audio to the earpiece, meaning that users can listen to music or take calls while swimming. The device also works well in a noisy environment.
Aquaris also looks like the sports version of a hearing aid, which makes it appealing to younger people and those with more active lifestyles. Moreover, while the waterproof functionality is impressive, it doesn't come at the expense of sound.
Aquaris offers high-definition sound with 48 channels with high-frequency resolution, as well as a 12 kHz frequency range. The device, however, is not a simple accessory, which means that those interested in the Aquaris hearing aid must consult their physician or ENT/ otolaryngologist to ensure the device is appropriate.
According to a survey by Siemens, 17 percent of 500 hearing aid owners limited their activity to avoid damaging their hearing aids. Such restrictions are particularly hard on certain groups such as hearing-impaired children or people who work in dusty environments. With its dust-, shock-, and water-proof capabilities, Siemens' new Aquaris hearing aid aims to make things easier and eliminate some of those restrictions.
The Aquaris is now available through audiologists nationwide and costs roughly $2,500 per earpiece. The amount, however, may vary depending on the cost of custom fitting. Check out Siemens' Web site for more details on the product and its worldwide distributors.