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iPhone Non-Compatibility with Hearing Aids and Cochlear Implants

16812 Views 26 Replies Latest reply: Sep 19, 2007 9:36 PM by SLAPSHOTW RSS
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HearingExchange Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Sep 10, 2007 8:44 PM
*iPhone's non-compatibility with hearing aids and cochlear implants is a huge disservice to deaf and hard of hearing consumers.* Often, this segment of the population relies on cell phones as their device of choice for telecommunications. Electronic landline phones don't offer the same clarity and quality of sounds. For many with hearing loss, it can be a fine line between speech discrimination and lack thereof.

It is unfortunate that *Apple has chosen to ignore the millions of people with hearing loss when developing their "revolutionary" iPhone.* The national advocacy organization, *Hearing Loss Association of America has already filed a complaint with the FCC.* Hopefully, Apple execs will heed the call of this special population and rectify this situation soon.
  • 4n6doc Level 4 Level 4 (2,305 points)
    I think that you should bring this important issue to the attention of Apple's PR department. Their phone number is (408) 974-2042.
    PowerMac G5, iBook G4, AppleTV, 80 GB video iPod, 8 GB iPhone, Mac OS X (10.4.10)
  • An Inconvenient Carbon Credit Calculating status...
    Well known radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh, or "El Rushbo" employs Cochlear Implants and owns an iphone. He likes it so much that he bought 40 iphones for his staff and close friends.
    20" Imac , 30g ipod video, iphone, Mac OS X (10.4.9)
  • SLAPSHOTW Level 3 Level 3 (745 points)
    iTunes now supports closed-captioning though (and I think the iPod Touch does as well, which means the iPhone will as well most likely), which is a step in the right direction.
    Core 2 Duo MBP, 8gb iPhone, iPod nano 4GB, iPod 40GB Clickwheel, 20" Cinema D, Mac OS X (10.4.10)
  • SLAPSHOTW Level 3 Level 3 (745 points)
    You can read about it in the iPod touch feature guide:

    http://manuals.info.apple.com/en/iPodtouch_FeaturesGuide.pdf

    I don't see why this wouldn't come to the iPhone.
    Core 2 Duo MBP, 8gb iPhone, iPod nano 4GB, iPod 40GB Clickwheel, 20" Cinema D, Mac OS X (10.4.10)
  • iphonechik Level 2 Level 2 (210 points)
    There is always the TTY Setting on the iPhone which assists the "Hearing Impaired"! With that setting you can get an adapter for $19.00

    *iPhone TTY Adapter*

    *This adapter lets you use your iPhone with standard TTY devices. Just plug the cable from your TTY device into one end of the iPhone TTY Adapter, then plug the other end of the adapter into your iPhone.*

    That's always another option..:)
    eMac PowerPC G4, Mac OS X (10.4.10), Blueberry ibook G3 4GB ipod Nano (Remastered Green Edition) 8GB 1st Gen. iphone
  • LongTimeUser2 Calculating status...
    I have read the threads on iPhone incompatibility with hearing aids and there is some comparing of apple((s) no pun intended) and oranges if you will. The issue of telecoil/T-switch use on a hearing aid is a separate issue from closed captioning. As a hard of hearing person with a digital hearing aid, my preference is to hear a television as opposed to watching captions on it. The same would be true of a cell phone use even if captioning were available on it. The matter is one of accessibilty and fairness. I have met and "tested" other manufacturers cell phone with their initial attempts to make them compatible, and many have; it's a fifty cents telecoil to put in from what I understand.

    I just returned from an Apple store Sat. and every salesperson attempted to give me a TTY connector as the "solution". I'll call Apple PR on my compatible cell phone. Listen up Apple, there are almost 30 million of us with hearing loss, mostly older and with the money to buy. I did say money, right? Oh, that's only a tenth or so of the US population.

    As a long-time Mac user-Apple 2E, a professional working with people with hearing loss and hearing aid wearer myself, this is HORRIBLE. Who wants my money! And to top it off, I bought a not insignificant number of Apple (APPL) shares Fri. before I found out about this. Guess I would like to know how many other shareholders are hard of hearing Maybe one works in the FCC? I'm MAD!

    I love you Apple but this one has to be rectified. Let's do it the easy quiet way. I'm sitting on $300 or so wanting an iPhone. You want it?
    MacBook Pro 17", Mac OS X (10.4.10)
  • LongTimeUser2 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    My apology this is posted twice; just noticed how things are following chronologically and the first post of the below is in the middle of the others and I didn't want it overlooked:

    I have read the threads on iPhone incompatibility with hearing aids and there is some comparing of apple((s) no pun intended) and oranges if you will. The issue of telecoil/T-switch use on a hearing aid is a separate issue from closed captioning. As a hard of hearing person with a digital hearing aid, my preference is to hear a television as opposed to watching captions on it. The same would be true of a cell phone use even if captioning were available on it. The matter is one of accessibilty and fairness. I have met and "tested" other manufacturers cell phone with their initial attempts to make them compatible, and many have; it's a fifty cents telecoil to put in from what I understand.

    I just returned from an Apple store Sat. and every salesperson attempted to give me a TTY connector as the "solution". I'll call Apple PR on my compatible cell phone. Listen up Apple, there are almost 30 million of us with hearing loss, mostly older and with the money to buy. I did say money, right? Oh, that's only a tenth or so of the US population.

    As a long-time Mac user-Apple 2E, a professional working with people with hearing loss and hearing aid wearer myself, this is HORRIBLE. Who wants my money! And to top it off, I bought a not insignificant number of Apple (APPL) shares Fri. before I found out about this. Guess I would like to know how many other shareholders are hard of hearing Maybe one works in the FCC? I'm MAD!

    I love you Apple but this one has to be rectified. Let's do it the easy quiet way. I'm sitting on $300 or so wanting an iPhone. You want it?
    MacBook Pro 17", Mac OS X (10.4.10)
  • romad Level 3 Level 3 (590 points)
    HearingExchange wrote:





    Deaf and hard of hearing people who are telephone users should not have to go out and buy adaptive equipment to make their phones compatible. It is the law in the U.S. that phones be equipped with the telecoil feature. This is why complaints have been filed with the FCC against Apple.





    Well, since the iPhone had to be APPROVED by the FCC BEFORE it was released, then they saw that it already met the law's requirements. The use of adaptive devices is one of the APPROVED ways of complying with requirements.
    iMac (G5, G4, G3), Powerbook, iPhone, iPod, Mac OS X (10.4.10), Mac OS 10.3.9, Mac OS 9.2.1
  • w7ox Level 4 Level 4 (2,385 points)
    HearingExchange wrote:
    *iPhone's non-compatibility with hearing aids and cochlear implants is a huge disservice to deaf and hard of hearing consumers.* Often, this segment of the population relies on cell phones as their device of choice for telecommunications. Electronic landline phones don't offer the same clarity and quality of sounds. For many with hearing loss, it can be a fine line between speech discrimination and lack thereof.

    It is unfortunate that *Apple has chosen to ignore the millions of people with hearing loss when developing their "revolutionary" iPhone.* The national advocacy organization, *Hearing Loss Association of America has already filed a complaint with the FCC.* Hopefully, Apple execs will heed the call of this special population and rectify this situation soon.


    What is the source of the "facts" stated above. I know folks with hearing aids using an iPhone and know of no technical reason there should be any incompatibility.

    But, if this is true, there are many more cell phone choices out there: It is Apple's loss if (as is alleged) they do not address this market.

    Please provide factual basis statement so we can know if this is credible or trolling. If true, I am sympathetic -- since I am deaf in one ear. But unsupported allegations serve no purpose.

    Phil
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