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Arjun Oberoi

Simple and free solution is available for millions of Indians living with hearing loss

Mobile Ears app provides a better listening experience to people with mild and moderate hearing loss.

Arjun Oberoi

Have you ever come across senior members of the family or neighbours who have become hard of hearing! Some of them even refuse to acknowledge they have a hearing problem. This usually happens because many people feel that it is a Taboo subject and wouldn’t like to be seen with a hearing aid.

In India, 3 out of every 40 people(*1) suffer from a disabling hearing loss, according to statistics from the World Health Organization. Over 68% of them can benefit from using a hearing aid(*2), however, less than 3% of these are likely to have one(*1). The reasons can range from non-availability of a hearing aid to the high cost of diagnosis and devices to stigma and a limiting mindset towards using it in social situations.

Mobile Ears is a convenient and free app-based solution for millions of Indians who have a mild to moderate hearing impairment and can benefit by making the sound loud and clear when having a one-on-one or a group conversation. Mobile Ears uses a unique speech amplification technology that ensures users hear everything clearly irrespective of background noise or number of people in the room. You can download the app here.

configure mobile ears

Clarity of speech & sound at zero cost

Mobile Ears is the result of years of joint research efforts by Listen AS and Norwegian research organization SINTEF to perfect speech clarity, noise cancellation, filtering and removal of unwanted background noise. Speech clarity is at the core of Mobile Ears. Most others solutions in the market sound metallic & unnatural to new users and getting used to them can take anywhere from 2 to 6 weeks.

“Exclusion from communication can have a significant impact on everyday life, causing a feeling of loneliness, isolation and frustration. Our mission is to enable quality hearing under any environment, for everyone”, says Snorre Vevstad, CEO, Listen AS. “Mobile Ears is easy to use, requires no special devices, beneficial for people of all ages and suitable for indoor as well as outdoor sound environments. I am confident that this one-click solution can be of assistance to millions of Indians who are unable to use traditional medical hearing aids.”

Barriers for pursuing hearing care

The reasons for not pursuing hearing care can be broadly divided into stigma and price-related. The number one reason is denial about any hearing impairment, saying that they can hear well enough. The other stigma-related reasons are: using a hearing aid will look embarrassing, unattractive and I am too young to have such a problem. The price-related reasons are high cost of hearing aids and no coverage by insurance providers. These insights are based on a research by David & Werner in a review on “Stigma and Health” in 2016.

WHO global estimates, more than the half of the Adults with disabling hearing loss are over 65 years and countries in South Asia, including India, have a high prevalence of such population(*3).

Hearing loss affects a high percentage of society and this is where Mobile Ears comes in. It lowers the barriers for anyone who wants to hear better with a free and easy to use app. It helps users to lead and active life without the need to speak up/ louder with them during conversations. More importantly, it does not look like a hearing aid.

Reasons fot not pursuing hearing care

Using Mobile Ears on the smartphone:

  1. Download from the iTunes App Store
  2. Open the app and enter the user’s age & gender, so that the app can customize the listeners’ experience 
  3. Plug in earphones and move the button on the slider to personalize the sound for maximum speech clarity and amplification.

The smartphone can be placed on the table or in front of the users. Unlike traditional hearing aid devices, setup and adjusting the sound on Mobile Ears can be done without visiting a specialist. The app also works offline.

User feedback:

“I am pursuing an MBA and currently on a 2-month internship. I find it difficult to hear everything said by the professor in my classroom, even if I sit in the first row. A hearing aid is useful but it is also extremely expensive and fragile for.
When I used the MobileEars app, the audio quality was clear and as good as my hearing aid. I was able to have conversations without interruptions. It is always on my phone and helps me understand what others are speaking. I believe it will be useful for people like me”.

  • Arjun Oberoi, 24 years, Mohali, pursuing MBA at Chandigarh University

“Sometimes, I find it hard to follow conversations when people speak softly. My daughter has to speak up when talking to me. My neighbors always know which television soap I am watching, because I keep the TV volume on the higher side.
MobileEars was extremely easy to use, I just had to wear earphones and adjust the volume. I will use it on my next bridge party with friends”.

  • Nalini Varadpande, 82 years, Nagpur, Ex-principal of LAD college
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Joachim Jacobsen
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