Discreet hearing aids that are modern, affordable and reliable—these devices can make a life-changing difference for millions of people worldwide. But with so much contradictory information out there, those who could desperately use such devices are left with a number of questions—about dependability, about ease-of-use and, above all, about discreet hearing aids’ prices.
This Audientes Insights article will give you valuable information about some of the best discreet hearing aids available today—and answer some of your most common questions about them. If you’re looking for an affordable, discreet hearing aid loaded with cutting-edge features, be sure to check out Ven™ by Audientes, our very own hearing aid and one of the newest models on the market.
The dawn of the discreet hearing aid
“They make me look old.”
“They look like big beige bananas.”
The feeling is all too common. Many people can’t get over the fact that hearing aids frequently look clunky and unsightly. With their cheap beige plastic casing, awkwardly protruding controls and fussy wiring, they’re not exactly something you’d want to wear for a night out.
Today’s consumers are desperate for products that will not only help them with their hearing loss—but that will also be unobtrusive, with a premium look and feel. Thankfully, they now have options. A wide range of discreet hearing aids is now on the market.
Broadly speaking, the most discreet hearing aids can be put into two groups. Some attempt to be “invisible”—so tiny that they fit within the ear canal. Others, like our own Ven are discreet by virtue of “blending in”—that is, mimicking the look and feel of high-end earbuds, such as Apple’s AirPods or Samsung’s Galaxy Buds or headsets such as those in Sennheiser’s Momentum series. Let’s talk about the pros and cons of both types.
Invisible-in-canal. In-the-canal. Completely-in-canal.
The terminology around some of the “invisible” hearing aids out there can be confusing. Just as confusing is the fact that, while they are all discreet, these hearing aids typically aren’t truly imperceptible. And, because of their small size, using them is nearly impossible for those with limited dexterity.
“Their promises are very tempting: most of my patients dream of a hearing aid that you can’t see,” says hearing instrument practitioner Hanan Merrill, “but they’re not a good option for many.” Merrill’s concern is echoed by other voices in the hearing healthcare industry. “Invisible hearing aids… often have fewer features than larger models,” writes Suzy Davenport in Medical News Today.
Among the lacking features? Well, many “invisible” hearing aids are too small to have on-board controls, making it difficult to adjust the volume or other settings. Moreover, for the most part, “invisible” hearing aids often lack Bluetooth connectivity, an increasingly popular feature in the smartphone age.
There’s another problem. Many of the smallest models need to be custom-fitted, in what can be an expensive, inconvenient process. And, unfortunately, people with small or narrow ear canals often discover that the devices simply won’t fit at all.
Finally, there’s the issue of price. “Invisible” discreet hearing aids cost at least $1,000 per ear. And that’s just for a basic model. The cost of more feature rich “invisible” discreet hearing aids can be more than $3,000 per ear. There’s also the cost of fittings—and battery replacements—to keep in mind.
Let’s face it, while “invisible” hearing aids are an interesting concept—the reality just isn’t as appealing. Thankfully, a whole new type of discreet hearing aid is now coming onto the market. Designed to blend in, not be hidden away, these cutting-edge devices, like Audientes’ Ven, are indistinguishable from high-end headphones and earphones. And, with AirPods and other earbuds increasingly becoming must-have accessories, consumers are finding it easier than ever to find hearing aids that don’t attract unwanted attention.
Best of all, options like Ven are feature-rich. For instance, Ven comes with a built-in hearing test, allowing it to automatically adapt to your hearing profile in just minutes (Learn more about self-fitting). The device also has onboard controls, allowing users to easily adjust the volume and other settings.
There’s more. Ven’s rechargeable battery is designed for all day use, saving you the expense of buying a never-ending stream of replacement batteries—and the annoyance of trying to install them. Bluetooth-enabled, Ven can be used with Audientes’ smartphone app, giving you even more control of how you hear. Better yet, Ven is affordably priced—and you can purchase the device from the comfort of your home.
If you’re looking for a discreet hearing aid that is powerful, affordable and easy-to-use, the answer is clear. Whether you’re a first-time hearing aid user, or looking to upgrade, Ven is a life-changing device that can help you re-engage with the world around you—all while avoiding the stigma of traditional hearing aids.