Advanced Bionics (AB), in collaboration with Phonak, a provider of hearing solutions, announced that it received FDA approval to be able to bring Marvel hearing technology to Advanced Bionics cochlear implants wearers.

 This includes:

  • Sky CI™ Marvel, said to be “the world’s first dedicated sound processor for children,”
  • New Naída™ CI Marvel sound processor for adults,
  • Sky Link Marvel and Naida Link Marvel super-power hearing aids for bimodal wearers,
  • New Target CI fitting software with “industry-first features,”
  • New Advanced Bionics Remote app for easy adjustments via smartphone.

With its more than 25 years of experience in cochlear implants, Advanced Bionics brings the Marvel platform to benefit adult cochlear implant recipients. With AutoSense OS 3.0, this machine-learning algorithm reportedly “analyzes the sounds in the listener’s environment every 0.4 seconds and can identify whether they’re in a noisy restaurant, car, concert hall, at home, etc.” It then engages the appropriate cochlear implant system features to help “customize and enhance the wearer’s hearing experience based on the specific characteristics of the listening environment,” according to the company.

Related article: Advanced Bionics to Add Phonak Marvel Hearing Technology to Cochlear Implants

With Marvel CI, Advanced Bionics offers “the world’s first cochlear implant sound processor to connect to virtually any Bluetooth-enabled device and to support hands-free calling.”

Sky CI Marvel is the “World’s First Dedicated Sound Processor“ for Children

Sky CI Marvel combines Advanced Bionics sound processing with the Marvel platform from Phonak. AutoSense Sky OS 3.0 work similarly to the adult version in Naida CI Marvel, but is uniquely designed for a child’s typical listening situations, providing “excellent sound quality and performance wherever the child goes,” according to the company’s announcement.


Offering a wide variety of wearing options, child-preferred colors, and waterproof accessories, Sky CI Marvel offers “flexibility for a growing child’s adventures, whether at the pool or in school.” Its integrated Roger technology help kids hear their teachers and conversation partners in classrooms, cafeterias, and auditoriums directly in their ears, bypassing noise in the environment. Plus, direct smartphone connectivity via Bluetooth and the AB Remote app helps kids stay connected with the world around them throughout their day.

Dynamic Bimodal Hearing with Sky Link Marvel and Naida Link Marvel

Most cochlear implant wearers choose to a have only one cochlear implant despite having severe or profound hearing loss in both ears. The other un-implanted ear requires a super-powered hearing solution that works in harmony with the cochlear implant. This is known as bimodal hearing, and scientific evidence shows that combining a hearing aid with a cochlear implant results in significantly higher speech understanding and sound quality than provided by the cochlear implant or a hearing aid alone.*

Marvel technology has now been extended to these bimodal-hearing patients with the introduction of Phonak Sky Link Marvel and new Naida Link Marvel. Both the Sky Link Marvel and Naida Link Marvel can be worn together as hearing aids or be paired with an Advanced Bionics Sky CI Marvel or Naida CI Marvel sound processor. Because they are both based on Marvel technology, the cochlear implant sound processor and hearing aid are wirelessly connected and communicate with each other in a coordinated, dynamic way, the company says. Like their cochlear implant counterparts, both Sky Link Marvel and Naida Link Marvel also feature RogerDirect, hands-free calls with own voice-pickup, and directly connect to iOS, Android, or other Bluetooth-enabled devices.

“This is one of the most important and impressive product launches Advanced Bionics has ever had. Building on the wildly successful Phonak Marvel platform, Naída CI Marvel, Sky CI Marvel, and Target CI are going to be game changers for the cochlear implant industry, revolutionizing the way our wearers can expect to hear with their cochlear implant systems, and the way their hearing care providers fit them,” said Victoria E. Carr-Brendel, PhD, GVP, Sonova Group and President of Advanced Bionics.

“The relationship between Phonak and Advanced Bionics is more than just a collaboration – it’s truly a partnership among two sister brands that share Sonova’s vision of a world where everyone enjoys the delight of hearing and lives a life without limitations,” said Sandy Brandmeier, President of Sonova USA’s Wholesale Hearing Instruments division. “Marvel was Phonak’s most successful product launch in history and we couldn’t be prouder to offer that technology to bimodal wearers as well as those preparing for cochlear implants with Naida Link Marvel and Sky Link Marvel.”

Target CI Marvel is Designed to Offer Hearing Care Professionals “Easier, Faster, and Smarter Fittings”

Target CI offers hearing care professionals “easier fittings with the industry-standard Noahlink Wireless, giving them and their patients the freedom and convenience of cable-free programming.” Advanced Bionics says that professionals can program a cochlear implant and the associated bimodal hearing aid with one software, in one fitting session. Target CI is also designed to be a “smarter fitting tool, with default settings optimized for cochlear implant patients, giving professionals the flexibility to meet their patient-specific needs.”

“My hearing aid research studies have shown that AutoSense technology provides significant improvement in hearing in many challenging real-world listening situations,” said Jace Wolfe, PhD, Chief of Audiology & Research, Hearts for Hearing. “I’m pleased to see this kind of innovation available in the Marvel CI to allow adult and pediatric CI patients to connect with the world around them more easily than ever before. Target CI’s integration with the Noah software system and Noahlink Wireless will also add a great deal of efficiency for clinicians working with cochlear implants.”

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* Gifford RH, Dorman MF. Bimodal hearing or bilateral cochlear implants? Ask the patient. Ear and Hearing. 2019;40(3):501-516.

Source: Advanced Bionics, Ear and Hearing