GN Hearing, a Danish manufacturer of hearing aids and headsets, has announced a new partnership with Google that will make them the first manufacturer to enable a full spectrum of direct audio streaming from Android devices to hearing aids.

The expectations are that direct streaming will become available to hearing aid users of the recently launched hearing aids ReSound LiNX Quattro™ and Beltone Amaze™ in a future Android release.

“According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), around 466 million people worldwide have disabling hearing loss. This number is expected to increase to 900 million people by the year 2050,” said Vice President of Engineering at Google, Seang Chau.

“Google is working with GN Hearing to create a new open specification for hearing aid streaming support on future versions of Android devices,” continued Chau.

According to GN Hearing, once the feature is launched users will be able to connect and monitor their hearing aids so they can get the full advantages of their Android devices without using an intermediate device for streaming to their hearing aids. This will, for example, allow the users to call friends and listen to music.

“We are honoured to partner with Google for this important development, which will enable direct streaming for even more hearing aid users through their Android devices. This is another example of how GN Hearing relentlessly strives to drive innovation forward by developing new products and solutions with unique benefits for hearing aid users and audiologists around the world,” said CEO at GN Hearing, Anders Hedegaard.

Google has published the new hearing aid specification for Android smartphones: Audio Streaming for Hearing Aids (ASHA) on Bluetooth Low Energy Connection-Oriented Channels. The first hearing aid manufacturer to be able to utilise the new specification is GN Hearing, and in time other hearing aid manufacturers can build native hearing aid support for Android.

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