12th Nov 2018
Phonak Introduces New Marvel Hearing Aids
And They Are Really Marvellous!
We have just returned from a fantastic launch event in London where Phonak launched their very latest hearing aid platform. They are calling the platform the Marvel, and to be candid, we can see why. It introduces so many new features and so many new benefits for users, that many that it is almost hard to find where to start. We are excited about these hearing aids, and there seems to be a lot of excitement generated among users as well. Let's investigate why.
Made For Any Phone.
While Made For iPhone hearing aids are well established, Phonak had never introduced a Made For iPhone hearing aid, they decided to go a different way with their mobile phone connectivity. They chose one that would give them a direct connection to any mobile phone. Phonak relied on the traditional Bluetooth protocol, which offered huge benefits. It meant that any hearing aid they produced would be technically able to connect to any Bluetooth enabled device, not just phones. That strategy also presented real technical difficulties. The first Made For Any Phone hearing devices did not offer stereo audio streaming of phone calls or any other audio. It also ensured that Phonak's quite famous ear to ear features did not work.
A New System
The new Marvel platform does not have any of those limitations. The new system will ensure that users will experience stereo streaming audio from any Bluetooth enabled device, that includes most mobile phones available, computers, even some modern TVs. It also means that Marvel users can have that audio streaming with the full benefits of Phonak's ear to ear features (Binaural Voice Streaming Technology BVST for short).
More Than Just Audio Connection
The Bluetooth connection is being used for more than just audio streaming though. They will also use that same connection for data exchange between the mobile phone and the hearing aids. This ability offers much more benefits for consumers and professionals alike. The data exchange is the core of the new ability to remotely fine tune the hearing aids in real time and for the user to give real-time day to day feedback with the new Hearing Diary.
Remote Fine Tuning
The new remote fine-tuning system is excellent, a video calling system gives the same feeling of face to face interaction, just in a different way. While the remote support may not be for everyone, I think it will be welcomed by people who see it as a real alternative to in-clinic appointments
Speech To Text
They have also introduced a new speech to text app with the new products. The new app acts as a transcription system which allows users to read what is being said by the person on the other end of the phone. It works in real time and thanks to hands-free phone calling you can carry on the conversation while you read the dialogue. The app will allow people with hearing loss extra help to understand people on their mobile phone.
Phonak's Roger system is the Gold Standard in FM assistive devices for people with hearing loss. All Marvel hearing aids will be able to be upgraded in late 2019 by hearing care professionals so that the new RogerDirect™ system can be added to the hearing aids allowing Roger microphone equipment to stream directly to Marvel hearing aids without having to attach an external receiver. That is something special and it will provide even better benefit for people in complex sound environments.
So What Do We Know About Phonak Marvel?
This is the first part of the Marvel platform, the first to be introduced will be the Audeo (their Receiver In Canal devices) is the first to be introduced. The Marvel Audeo family will be made up of five hearing aids of which two will be rechargeable. The smallest traditional Zinc Air battery size will be the 312. The hearing aids will not all be available initially, below you can see a quick explanation of the devices and their availability
Audeo Marvel R
The Audeo Marvel R is Phonak's latest rechargeable Made For Any Phone hearing aid, it is quite discreet and can be used with several receiver variations meaning it can cover a lot of hearing losses. The device will connect directly to any Bluetooth enabled Mobile phone and will stream phone calls and audio in stereo. The devices are available from November 22 in the UK and should be rolled out globally through November and December.
Audeo Marvel 312
The Audeo Marvel 312 is a very small RIC device which uses a size 312 battery, it is quite discreet and can be used with several receiver variations meaning it can cover a lot of hearing losses. It doesn't have a telecoil although as always it is a wireless device. The device will connect directly to any Bluetooth enabled Mobile phone and will stream phone calls and audio in stereo. The devices are available from November 22 in the UK and should be rolled out globally through November and December.
Audeo Marvel 312 T
The Audeo Marvel 312T is a small RIC device which uses a 312 battery, it is still very discreet and can be used with several receiver variations meaning it can cover a lot of hearing losses. This device will have a telecoil. The device will connect directly to any Bluetooth enabled Mobile phone and will stream phone calls and audio in stereo. This device will not be available until Spring 2019.
Audeo Marvel 13T
The Audeo Marvel 13T is a RIC device that will use a size 13 battery. It will be slightly bigger than the 312, but still pretty discrete. It can be used with several receiver variations meaning it can cover a lot of hearing losses. The device will connect directly to any Bluetooth enabled Mobile phone and will stream phone calls and audio in stereo. This device will not be available until Spring 2019.
Audeo Marvel RT
The Audeo Marvel RT is a rechargeable RIC hearing aid which will have a telecoil. It can be used with several receiver variations meaning it can cover a lot of hearing losses. The device will connect directly to any Bluetooth enabled Mobile phone and will stream phone calls and audio in stereo. This device will not be available until late 2019.
Rocker Switch, Not Push Button
Phonak have also changed the push button on the devices, they now offer a rocker switch instead for more functionality.
Multi-functional and Feature Rich Hearing Aids
These hearing devices are hugely multi-functional and feature-rich. The Marvel contains probably every single one of the current headline features in the hearing aid world, and they have even thrown in some new ones, here’s the quick list:
- Stereo Bluetooth streaming: Stereo streaming from any Bluetooth enabled device, that means iPhone, iPad, laptops, computers, Macs, Android phones, Windows phones, hell any Bluetooth-enabled phone.
- Real Hands-free calling in stereo: Like the Audeo B-direct, the Marvel offers true hands-free calling from Bluetooth-enabled phones and VOIP services like Skype, except, to both hearing aids.
- TV Streaming: Marvel can stream directly from Bluetooth-enabled TVs, and can also stream from the Phonak TV Connector accessory.
- Rechargeability: They say both Marvel rechargeables will deliver a full day of hearing aid use from a single charge.
- Remote adjustments: Marvel hearing aids can be adjusted remotely by your hearing expert.
- New App Eco-System: Brand new apps to make life easier and engage the consumer in the process.
- RogerDirect: This is really fascinating, for the first time, users will be able to stream from Roger devices directly to their hearing aids.
- Full Phonak Feature Set: The Marvel will offer full and up to date inter-ear features.
Stereo Bluetooth streaming
Marvel will directly stream stereo audio from any device capable of streaming audio via Bluetooth. This includes almost any device you can think of. You can connect it directly to your Android phone; you can connect it directly to your Mac Book or Windows laptop. You can even connect it directly to any Bluetooth enabled television. That is pretty amazing, that is a direct connection without any streamer. The quality of streaming audio is excellent; audio is full and clear. Music is warm and full, and phone calls are clear.
True Hands-Free Calling
The Marvel delivers true hands-free calling in stereo. You will hear your phone calls in both ears giving you a better chance at understanding what is being said. Hands-free means you don't need to touch your phone. Your phone can be up to thirty feet away. You simply hit the button on your hearing aid to answer the call.
Versatile TV Streaming
While the Marvel hearing aids will connect directly to Bluetooth enabled TVs, Phonak have also introduced a new TV Streamer. The TV streamer allows low energy streaming offering great audio and reduced battery usage.
The New Apps
Phonak have introduced a new app called the myPhonak App which allows you to access a hearing diary and the new remote support feature. The hearing diary part of the app allows you to give feedback about your day to day experiences with the hearing aids.
Speech To Text App
As I mentioned earlier the Phonak myCall-to-Text app allows you to read, in real time, what the person on the other end of your mobile phone is saying. Interestingly, you don't need to be a Marvel hearing aid wearer to use the app, you can download this app and use it without wearing Phonak Hearing aids.
Fully Featured Hearing Aids
As I said, these hearing aids aren't de-featured in any way. They include all of the latest Phonak features including their much-celebrated ear to ear features. They also have a brand new sound management system called Autosense 3.0 which recognises and automatically adapts to precisely match more listening situations than ever before. Autosense 3.0 also classifies streamed signals and will adapt how it works to better help you to hear the way you should.
If you have any questions about Marvel hearing aids, are looking for a hearing test, or are interested in ear wax removal, give us a call on 0131 629 1819 or contact us online now.
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