Phonak, a global provider of hearing instruments and wireless communication solutions, announced the launch of its new CROS B-R device, what the company calls its “first” Contralateral Routing of Signal (CROS) device with a lithium-ion (Li-ion) rechargeable battery. The CROS B-R is designed to help provide single-sided deaf clients a solution with a rechargeable battery that is said to last for one day of hearing from both sides. It broadens the company’s portfolio of Li-ion rechargeable hearing solutions on its Belong™platform.
“Losing the function in one ear severely limits a person’s hearing on a variety of levels,” said Christine Jones, Vice President of Audiology at Phonak US. “They can have difficulty determining where an unseen sound originates from, such as oncoming traffic outside of their field of vision. Holding a conversation in noisy environments is also extremely challenging, particularly when the speaker is on the non-hearing side. That’s why we’re so excited to introduce our rechargeable CROS B-R wireless device. It combines excellent hearing performance of a Phonak CROS device with the proven benefits of the Phonak rechargeable technology.”
Single-sided deafness, a form of untreated hearing loss, is said to have significant repercussions on a person’s work and personal lives. The World Health Organization (WHO) reports 466 million people worldwide suffer from disabling hearing loss, and estimates the annual cost to countries in direct health services and lost productivity at $750 billion.1
Often patients with SSD 2 are left untreated and are not necessarily aware that there are other treatment options besides corrective surgery.
As part of the Phonak CROS B product line, the CROS B-R system consists of the CROS device for the non-hearing ear and a Phonak Audéo™ B-R, in the other ear. The CROS B-R device microphone is designed to pick up sound from the non-hearing ear and wirelessly transfers it to the Audéo B-R. Clients are able to use the same smart charging options for both devices, according to Phonak. In addition, the CROS B-R is reportedly Phonak’s first CROS device to include a Li-ion rechargeable battery, which addresses a unmet market need.3
“The CROS B-R overcomes one of the most common issues for SSD clients who use CROS systems—high battery consumption,” said Jones. “The combination of the CROS B-R and Audéo B-R is a life-changing solution for SSD clients because they do not have to undergo risky surgery or settle for the common misperception that ‘you only need one good ear.’”
The Phonak CROS B-R will be available as of April 23, 2018.
1. Schlein L. WHO: Nearly 1 Billion People Risk Hearing Loss by 2050. VOA. March 3, 2018. https://www.voanews.com/a/world-health-organization-hearing-loss/4278903.html
2. Unilateral hearing loss: Single-sided deafness. Hear-it website. https://www.hear-it.org/single-sided-deafness. Published June 13, 2003.
3. Abrams HB, Kihm J. An introduction to MarkeTrak IX: A new baseline for the hearing aid market. Hearing Review. 2015;22(6):16.