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Starkey’s New Hearing Aid Uses AI Tech, Doubles as Activity Tracker

The hearing aid maker’s new Livio AI product, the “world’s first multi-use hearing aid,” features improved sound elements and 3D motion sensors for health tracking.

Starkey’s New Hearing Aid Uses AI Tech, Doubles as Activity Tracker
Starkey's new Livio AI hearing aid. (Photo courtesy of Starkey Hearing Technologies)

Starkey Hearing Technologies is set to make noise in the industry with its latest development: a first-of-its-kind hearing aid dubbed Livio AI which features integrated sensors and artificial intelligence. The new device can also track physical activity and cognitive health while the aid is in use.

“[With] Livio AI, we have transformed a single-use device into the world’s first multi-purpose hearing aid, a Healthable with integrated sensors and artificial intelligence,” said Brandon Sawalich, president of Starkey Hearing Technologies, in a statement. “Livio AI is so much more than just a hearing aid, it is a gateway to better health and wellness.”

In conjunction with the new device, the Eden Prairie-based company – which is one of the largest hearing aid makers in the world – has also created a pairable mobile app called Thrive Hearing, and three wireless accessories: Starkey Hearing Technologies TV, the Remote, and the Remote Microphone+. The Remote Microphone+ integrates Amazon Alexa connectivity into the Livio AI –making it the first hearing aid to include this feature. 

The advanced Hearing Reality technology incorporated into Livio AI has a 50 percent reduction level in noisy environments, Starky claims, and enables reduced listening effort and enhanced clarity of speech.

The device’s tracking elements, based on 3D motion sensors inside the hearing aids, include: a brain and body health score on the Thrive Hearing app, integration of physical activity data measured by sensors linked to Apple Health and Google Fit apps, and fall detection – for which direct app support is in the works.

The Livio AI also boasts integrated language translation and Starkey’s already-established features of feedback cancellation, high definition music prescription, and an advanced water, wax and moisture repellant system.

“We are proud to introduce these transformational technologies into the world of hearing aids,” said Dr. Achin Bhowmik, Starkey’s chief technology officer and executive vice president of engineering, in prepared remarks, “to both optimize the users’ hearing experiences and enable them to continuously monitor and improve their overall health besides treating hearing loss, reducing the associated risks of dementia, anxiety and social isolation.”

Starkey’s new technology is intended to enable people to take a more proactive and personal approach to treating hearing loss, thereby addressing other health issues believed to be related, including dementia and social isolation.

Made in two different models with several color options, the Livio AI is now available in the United States and Canada. Starkey plans to roll out the product to more than 20 other countries in 2019.

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