New Apple iOS 14 Includes a New Feature that Listens for Us

by | 06/26/2020 | Industry News, Patient Resources

Ios14 Feature

Apple announced the iOS14 at its annual Keynote on June 23rd. One of the features of this upgrade is the sound recognition capability. It could be particularly beneficial to those of us who have a hearing loss as it is programmed to listen on our behalf, to sounds in our immediate environments that we might miss.

These are everyday sounds of importance, such as a baby crying, our dogs barking, a knock at the door, or screaming. Our phone will pick up these sounds and send an alert prompt to our phones.

Tech giants such as Amazon and Google have used AI-based sound recognition in some of their devices. Predominantly as a safety feature, Amazon’s Alexa Gaurd detects the sound of alarms and broken glass, and Google’s microphone on Pixel phones detect a car crash and call emergency services.

It looks like Apple is following suit with its unique take on this technology to improve the lives of its users.

Sally Miranda AuD, CCC-A, Doctor of Audiology at All About Hearing, is impressed by the new features saying, “What a wonderful idea to have these features all in the palm of your hand. The best part about this is that it can be used in other places that a person may visit that do not have alerting systems.

Although it’s probably not 100% reliable, it can be a huge help in many different environments. I’m willing to bet more people have access to their phones than traditional alerting systems.

Many people who have an undiagnosed hearing loss may not be aware that they are missing sounds around them. This feature is a great tool to foster awareness. I really hope that people take advantage of this technology!”

More and more features are being introduced by large technology companies to support those in the hearing loss community, and it is not a moment too soon. For those of us who wear noise-canceling headphones daily, a sound recognition feature like this is superb. It ensures that even when listening to music, podcasts, videos, or taking a call, the alert system can make you aware of the sounds around you.

Even though Apple has said that this technology should not be used as a substitute for actual safety alerting systems, it is undoubtedly a step in the right direction. We at All About Hearing are excited to see the technology in action, helping our community to hear better with our Apple-shaped second ears.

For any questions regarding hearing loss, or to schedule your ‘Curbside Appointment’ call the team at (432) 689-2220.

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Dr. Joycelin Lopez, Au.D., CCC-A

Dr. Joycelin grew up in West Palm Beach, Florida. Initially, she earned a bachelor’s degree in linguistics from the state’s university. Then following graduation, she became a learning specialist, working with the hard of hearing. This experience sparked her curiosity in audiology. She returned to the University of Florida for graduate studies, where she gained her doctor of audiology degree. This education took her to North Carolina, where she completed an externship that focused on balance evaluations and central auditory processing. Her decision to move to Midland in late 2020 showcases her spirit of adventure. But also, it demonstrates her determination to find and assist people who can benefit from her professional expertise. Besides audiology, Dr. Joycelin has a passion for art, having taken classes all her life. Mostly, she works with watercolors, but she also has an interest in digital animation.

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