SAN LEANDRO, Calif., Sept. 13, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- iHear Medical announced today the issuance of key patents covering its groundbreaking online hearing solutions. U.S. Patent No. 9,439,008 covers interactive online hearing aid fitting by a non-expert consumer. The new fitting method involves streaming audio into a hearing aid while the consumer adjusts the settings based on their assessment of clarity, audibility and loudness tolerance. iHear's patented fitting system and method optimize the consumer's hearing experience in challenging situations, such as discerning soft female speech and listening in noisy conditions.
The iHEAR platform features first-of-a-kind innovations to deliver clinically effective hearing solutions to hearing impaired consumers. About 80% of those with hearing loss in the U.S. and 90% worldwide go untreated, making hearing impairment the most common form of disability, and the third most common health problem after heart disease and arthritis. iHear intends to expand the hearing aid market by offering inconspicuously worn products at dramatically lower price points, and a platform that addresses the entire fitting processfrom hearing testing to individualized calibration of the hearing aidall from the convenience of home.
"The ancient ground under the world of hearing aids is about to shift," stated Dr. Daniel Hartman, a partner at the San Francisco Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) Medical Group and a Fellow of the American Academy of Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgery.
iHear was also granted U.S. Patent No. 9,326,706 covering the iHearTest, the first and only FDA-approved hearing screener cleared for over-the-counter (OTC) sales. The iHearTest allows consumers to accurately test their hearing at home using a personal computer.
Programmable hearing aids available in hearing aid centers currently sell for an average of $2,400 each, and often cost over$7,000 for a pair of premium products. On the other hand, inexpensive and unregulated Personal Sound Amplifier Products, known as PSAPs, are notoriously ineffective due to poor quality and lack of individualized programming. iHear's affordable hearing solutions, the iHEARMAX and iHEARHD, combine high quality and individualized self-programming at home, offering an alternative to current products and business models for under $300.
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"iHear intends to create uncontested blue ocean markets by offering consumers lower cost hearing solutions with improved outcomes, while incumbents are entrenched in high-price low-volume business models," stated Adnan Shennib, Founder and President of iHear Medical.
About iHear Medical
iHear Medical is a venture-backed firm dedicated to addressing the global need for affordable and accessible hearing solutions. iHear's products and business models break through persisting barriers preventing people with hearing loss from acquiring and using hearing aids, including high cost, complex dispensing procedures, and the stigma of traditional hearing aids worn visibly behind the ear. iHear is pioneering discrete, web-enabled hearing solutions with 44 U.S. and international patents issued and pending in its intellectual property portfolio.