Bluetooth Technology

Bluetooth® is an international wireless communication protocol. It includes software and hardware, which allows secure, two-way audio or data streaming between Bluetooth devices such as computers, mobile phones and PDAs. Bluetooth devices send data and voice in a clean, clear, digital format up to 10 meters.

Since it is digital, the audio signal is not subject to the same sources of signal degradation that sometimes compromise the quality of analog (FM, AM or inductive) transmissions. In an analog signal path, electrical noise from a variety of sources is amplified along with the signal. In contrast, a digital Bluetooth signal is extracted from the noise; it alone is transmitted and amplified, while noise is rejected.

The low-power design of Bluetooth transmission systems has two advantages. One, it minimizes battery consumption for portable devices. Secondly, it places an intentional limit on the range of transmission — the most common version has a range of 10 meters — which helps to avoid interference among nearby devices. At the same time, walls and other obstacles have a negligible effect on Bluetooth transmission.

No hearing aid currently designed has Bluetooth technology integrated into its design. Options or accessories have to be purchased with hearing aids for it to receive a Bluetooth signal. With the proper accessories and properly equipped hearing aids, our patients can run a Bluetooth signal through their hearing aids.

A hearing aid has to have one or both of the following components to work with Bluetooth:

1.  A Telecoil – This is essentially a small magnet inside a hearing aid that receives signals from telephones or other devices. Most Bluetooth accessories communicate with the hearing aids through either a magnetic loop worn around the neck or using different magnetic coupler laying against a BTE hearing aid.

2.  Direct Audio Input (DAI) – this option is almost exclusive to standard BTEs and allows for connection with FM systems and other options. This is the most expensive way to use Bluetooth in conjunction with hearing aids.






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