There’s a new hearing aid in town, and it will make you rethink what you know about hearing health design.
Today Phonak announced a new hearing aid design called Phonak Slim. The name quickly reveals what the leading hearing brand has in store.
Phonak Slim runs on the same technology as the flagship product Phonak Lumity but with a new streamlined design meant to challenge hearing aid design convention and leave more room behind your ears (big for anyone with glasses or oxygen).
Let’s Start with a Close Up on The Product Design
While most hearing aids look virtually the same on the right and left, Phonak Slim contours to the head with a 7-degree bend that hugs your head and ears on each side.
The unique design also gets a special charging case with a slightly contoured right and left charger.
Phonak Slim comes in four two-tone colors, including: Graphite/Black, Coppy/Black, Sandalwood/Black, and Silver/Black.
Phonak Slim also includes a low-profile pushbutton for easy volume and program updates. This sets Phonak Slim apart from Signia Styletto (the only comparable design), which does not have a button.
What’s underneath this sleek new exterior?
Phonak made a point to launch Phonak Slim under the same tech platform as their flagship product, Phonak Audéo Lumity.
Lumity was released in late 2022 with a focus on background noise management. Lumity helps cut through background noise in a few ways. The first is a new operating system (the brain of the hearing aid) called AutoSense OS 5.0.
This new automatic operating system uses machine learning and scans the environment 700 times per second for real-time adjustment. Those rapid adjustments mean the hearing aid can shift modes quickly when your environment gets louder.
Lumity also adds new special features focused on background noise, StereoZoom 2.0, and SpeechSensor. StereoZoom 2.0 enhances the sound of the person in front of you over the background noise; this leads to a better understanding of speech.
Phonak Slim inherits some of Lumity’s favorite connection features, such as tap-control, hands-free calling on Android and iPhone devices, and a more stable Bluetooth classic connection.
Phonak Slim hearing aids will access the same myPhonak app as other devices.
You can read more about Phonak Lumity here.
When is Phonak Slim available?
Phonak reports that Slim will be available in most markets on the 25th of April. We’re excited to see how customers react to the new design.
Our team will complete a full in-depth review as soon as the product is released and available to customers.
Frequently asked questions
Phonak Paradise is the hearing aid platform prior to Phonak Lumity. While both platforms offer excellent hearing aid technology, there are several differences between the two. Phonak Lumity, as the successor to Paradise, builds upon the strong foundations of the previous platform with new advancements to offer more natural sound and improved speech understanding in challenging listening environments. For example, Speech Sensor is a new feature to help with understanding speech to the sides and behind of the hearing aid wearer, focusing in on where speech is loudest. This technology is an improvement on the AI tech that adjusts the hearing aid's settings based on the environment. The Lumity technology also offers smoother transitions when switching between settings, with those changes now occurring more gradually and less abruptly than Paradise. Additionally, there is a slight difference in the design of the Lumity versus the Paradise, but both hearing aids look visually very similar.
Phonak’s top-of-the-line hearing aid is the Receiver-in-Canal (RIC) style, the Phonak Audeo Lumity device. This model is renowned for its versatility, with a wide fitting range that caters to individuals with mild to severe/profound hearing loss. The Audeo Lumity is Phonak's latest technology, delivering fantastic sound quality and a wide range of options, such as the Slim RIC design, ActiveVent receiver for improved sound quality, improved charging options, and even a highly water-resistant design.
Phonak Lumity was introduced in August 2022.
The Lumity R means that the hearing aid is rechargeable, and the RT means that it is rechargeable and also has a telecoil feature.
Phonak and Costco split ways in November 2022 due to issues with rechargeability from the Kirkland Signature 10.0 device.
The Phonak Lumity Life product is highly water-resistant. While most hearing aids today have an IP rating of IP68, the highest rating available when it comes to water protection, the Phonak Lumity Life supposedly exceeds this rating with its additional water-resistant coating. What does that mean? An IP68 rating means that the devices can be submerged at a depth of 1.5 meters for up to 30 minutes. While this means that these hearing aids are durable to wear while engaging in physical activity, getting caught in the rain, or accidentally wearing them in the shower, the receivers of these devices may still be susceptible to water while the body of the hearing aid is quite water-resistant.
Kirkland is Costco's in-house brand. However, Phonak devices are no longer sold at Costco. In the past the Kirkland Signature 10.0 devices were Phonak brand devices.
Phonak Lumity is highly suited to a range of users with diverse needs and lifestyles. Its hands-free Android calling capability is particularly advantageous for those who are frequently on-the-move and require easy, wireless connectivity for their communication needs. Additionally, the ability to seamlessly connect to multiple Bluetooth-enabled devices can greatly benefit tech-savvy individuals who use various gadgets throughout their day. For users prioritizing ease-of-use, the automatic adjustments made by the Phonak Lumity ensure a simplified experience without the need for constant manual changes, allowing for a focus on uninterrupted, quality hearing.
Yes, the MyPhonak app allows for adjusting volume, speech clarity, and even creating your own programs.
he appropriate level of hearing aid technology for an individual is highly dependent on their unique lifestyle and hearing needs. For example, individuals residing in quieter environments with minimal background noise might not require the advanced features that come with premium-level technology, and may do just fine with standard technology options. The most critical aspect in the effectiveness of hearing aid technology is ensuring that the hearing aids are accurately prescribed and configured for the user’s specific type and degree of hearing loss. Users should consult with their hearing care professional who will program and fine-tune the hearing aid technology to their precise prescription and needs.
Yes, Phonak Lumity offers the option to include tinnitus management programs. These programs can be set up and personalized by your hearing care professional to help mask or manage your tinnitus symptoms, providing relief for those who experience this condition. You'll want to connect with them to set up a specialized program if you're interested in trying out this feature.