NEWARK-ON-TRENT, UK, and BLUFFDALE, Utah – Dec. 18, 2023 – Listen Technologies Corporation, a leading provider of advanced wireless listening solutions, and Ampetronic, a world-leading provider of audio induction loop systems, are transforming the way individuals access audio in public places. They are developing the first complete installed assistive listening system utilizing Auracast™ broadcast audio technology. This will be the first new product Listen Technologies and Ampetronic bring to market together since announcing their partnership and creation of a single source for innovative and accessible audio solutions.
Auracast™ is a new standard for Bluetooth® Low Energy audio. It can broadcast audio to unlimited numbers of receivers and hearing aids simultaneously without always needing to pair to a transmitter first. This enables use of Bluetooth as a wide area assistive listening technology. Auracast™ is expected to be available in many new hearing aids, earbuds, and headphones in the future.
Ampetronic and Listen Technologies are Auracast™ collaboration partners in the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG), contributing to standards development and interoperability testing. Ampetronic and Listen Technologies have also collaborated with leading hearing aid manufacturers, microphone manufacturers, and audio infrastructure companies to deliver a robust and reliable technology platform for installation in public environments.
The new solution includes networked installation transmitters for multi-channel broadcast for any size space, with the option for open or secure transmission. The solution also will include dedicated receivers and charging bases. Most venues will use the dedicated receivers so end users without Auracast™ certified devices can access the audio and fulfill local accessibility requirements. A complete line of accessories will also be available, including headphones, neck loops, and network management and configuration software.
The Significance of Making Audio Accessible Anywhere
The World Health Organization projects 2.5 billion people are expected to have some degree of hearing loss by 2050. Situational hearing loss, or the inability to hear clearly in a space because of noise, distance, language, or acoustics, can impact anyone. Auracast™ helps overcome the challenges of traditional assistive listening systems and increases access to clear audio for anyone with Auracast™ enabled earbuds or hearing aids.
Listen Technologies and Ampetronic have more than 60 years of combined experience helping people hear better with innovative technologies and solutions. They are part of Allvida, a rapidly growing group of companies offering products and solutions for accessibility, and recently partnered to expand their respective portfolios of assistive listening solutions with complementary technologies and systems, and bring exceptional products to market.
“Our project with Listen Technologies is a major step in furthering inclusion and hearing accessibility,” said Julian Pieters, Managing Director, Ampetronic. “At Ampetronic, we have always provided audio direct to hearing aids, wherever possible, to the advantage of hard of hearing end users as well as venues. Since 2013, we have worked alongside the hearing aid industry and the Bluetooth standards organization to create a roadmap for new technology. It is very exciting to take the first steps into the market. While it will take time to see Auracast™ receivers widely available, this complete system with dedicated receivers means venues can adopt the technology now.”
Auracast™ Based Assistive Listening Will Deliver a Better Listening Experience
The new platform will transform the way hearing assistance is delivered in public spaces. Increasingly, Auracast™ will be built into many hearing aids, smartphones, earbuds, and headphones, enabling these devices to receive an Auracast™ broadcast stream. End users will choose how they want to listen to audio for a personalized experience, selecting announcement channels or language channels, like they would make a classic Bluetooth connection. That means the assistive listening system will be available to anyone with their own device, providing much broader inclusion. In the future, an end user with an Auracast™ certified device will be able to select an audio stream without needing a special app installed or needing to borrow a receiving device.
This new world of hearing assistance will come, but it will take many years before consumer devices are all equipped with Auracast™ – until this time, induction loops remain direct-to-hearing aid solutions. Listen Technologies’ and Ampetronic’s new platform will allow venues to adopt the technology rather than wait for these devices to become widely available. The platform will include dedicated receivers that can receive open and private broadcasts from multi-channel transmitters.
The new platform will be optimized for reliability and performance and designed to be installed in any environment, from classrooms to stadiums, airport terminals to attractions. Transmitters can be managed remotely over a network, making it simple to provide whole-venue audio solutions.
“I am excited to announce our latest innovation in partnership with Ampetronic, a groundbreaking assistive listening system powered by Auracast™ broadcast audio technology,” said Tracy Bathurst, Chief Technology Officer, Listen Technologies. “This cutting-edge system represents a significant leap in audio accessibility, allowing seamless transmission of clear audio to multiple receivers and hearing aids simultaneously. With this new solution we’re not just enhancing sound quality, we’re transforming the listening experience.”
Ampetronic is a global leader in the design and manufacture of assistive listening solutions, specialising in hearing loop systems. With more than 30 years of experience, Ampetronic has been at the forefront of developing technologies that enhance communication accessibility for individuals with hearing impairments. Their solutions are widely used in diverse sectors, including education, hospitality, corporate, and public spaces. All Ampetronic solutions are developed to provide a genuine benefit to those who experience hearing loss. For more information check ampetronic.com.
About Listen Technologies
Listen Technologies enriches lives by providing assistive listening and communication solutions so everyone can hear clearly and share the same great experience. Listen’s innovative products serve those with hearing loss and enable inclusive experiences for all guests. Listen solutions are used in various venues and settings, including houses of worship, higher education facilities, performing arts centers, courts, tours, and manufacturing plants. Our vision is to improve life’s experiences through sound by providing exceptional audio anytime, anywhere, on any platform. To learn more about how Listen Technologies delivers a better way to hear the world, visit www.listentech.com.
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