Many people think of fitness devices like Fitbit when naming types of wearable technology, and indeed these devices were among the first in the wearables market. As the wearables market expanded, it came to include such things as smartwatches and health devices like blood sugar and heart rate monitors.
At the start of 2020 and a new decade, advanced in-ear listening products known as hearables have become one of the most popular forms of wearable technology.
A hearable is an alternative to traditional hearing aids for people with mild to moderate hearing loss who desire amplification. The device uses technology called digital signal processing (DSP) to provide an improved Bluetooth experience that gives people with hearing struggles the opportunity to receive amplification through wireless devices. People also use hearables to stream various forms of media.
Unique Features of Smart Hearables
To the untrained eye, hearables may look just like earbuds people are accustomed to seeing every day. However, they offer numerous benefits that earbuds don’t offer. These include:
- Improved sound quality: Hearables provide amplification of sound without risking additional damage to hearing. The noise monitoring feature makes it possible to cancel or filter sounds that compete for the user’s attention.
- Layered listening: This feature allows hearables users to customize their sound input from the environment as well as their phone calls and music. Users can cancel out the noise around them completely or adjust surrounding noise such as car horns to ensure their safety. The technical name for this feature is passive noise isolation.
- Smart device syncing capability: Smart earbuds use Bluetooth technology to sync with computers, tablets, smartphones, and more. Because they have both speakers and microphones, users can also access voice activated devices like Siri and Alexa.
- Streaming capabilities: Syncing the hearable device with a smartphone allows users to answer phone calls, stream music, and complete several other related tasks.
- Updates to operating systems: Hearables work in coordination with an operating system that fixes bugs and provides continuous updates. That means the hearables become more valuable over time because the operating system automatically adds new features.
Hearables Reduce Dependence on Larger Products
When manufacturers developed hearables over the past few years, they did so with the intention of combining devices such as smartphones and digital assistants into two small earbuds. This allows people to walk around with the features each of these devices offer without feeling overly dependent on each separate device.
Whether a person has a hearing loss or not, the explosive growth in the hearables market indicates that consumers are hungry for an improved digital experience.
Years ago, the cellphone started as a small flip phone with no other capabilities other than making and receiving calls and morphed into the tiny computer known as a smartphone that millions of people carry with them every day. Hearable earbud manufactures are right to feel optimistic that their technology will soon do the same thing in a wearable device rather than one people must keep track of and carry with them.