Using your smartphone or mobile with your hearing aids
Most smartphones and mobiles are compatible with hearing aids. This means they contain a small coil of wire called a hearing loop, or ‘Telecoil’. It creates a magnetic field that picks up sound and transfers it to your hearing aids on the hearing loop setting. This may make the caller’s voice clearer to hear. You need to make sure that you:
- Activate your hearing loop setting on your hearing aid. Your audiologist may need to do this for you. Find out more about how to use your hearing aids here.
- Activate the Telecoil setting on your phone. You can find out how to do this in your phone manual.
- Place the mobile or smartphone close to your hearing aid to hear the caller.
Phones can be rated for how well they work with hearing aids, as some work better than others. You may get radio interference – heard as buzzing – when you hold your mobile or smartphone close to your hearing aid. This is caused by the electronics and display in the phone which generates the interference.
The M (microphone) rating is how well the mobile or smartphone works with your hearings on the normal setting. The T (Telecoil) rating is how well the phone works with your hearing aids on the hearing loop setting. The ratings are ranked from 1 (poor) to 4 (excellent). You can find out the hearing aid compatibility of your phone or others by looking at the GARI database.
You may have a mobile or smartphone with a good M and T ratings and still experience interference. You can reduce interference by:
- making sure your hearing aid is fitted correctly
- holding the phone one or two inches away from your hearing aid
- using devices such as a neck loop or Bluetooth technology.
You might prefer to use your mobile or smartphone with hearing aids on the normal setting. Try what works best for you.