Case Study:

Enabling Wireless Digital Audio Streaming to Cochlear Hearing Implants

S3 Connected Health worked with Cochlear to enable connectivity on their True Wireless® range of accessories and wirelessly stream digital audio directly to Cochlear hearing implants; delivering clear sound for those with hearing implants over distance and in a range of challenging situations.

5 cochlear

The Project

The True Wireless® range of devices, which includes a mini microphone, phone clip, and TV streamer, gives a clear and secure connection in situations that have traditionally been problematic for those with hearing implants. The devices effectively eliminate signal drops associated with acoustic or traditional FM systems or the need for bulky neck-worn components.

To facilitate True Wireless® devices to stream directly to the Cochlear Nucleus® 6 hearing solution, the True Wireless® streaming protocol had to be prototyped and ported directly onto the Cochlear Nucleus® 6 Sound Processor.

project cochlear

The Challenges

binary protocole

Porting the protocol

onto a small and very constrained device that has to operate in congested wireless environments

wireless device

Enabling wireless audio streaming
from the True Wireless® devices directly to the sound processor on the Cochlear Nucleus 6 without impacting the functioning, existing wireless communications of the hearing aid implant

chip

Ensuring the new functionality

met the limited memory, processing capacity, and power constraints associated with a hearing implant sound processor

 

 

The Solution

To overcome these, our team used their expertise in medical device software, wireless communications, radio frequency (RF) engineering, antenna design, and firmware development for ultra-constrained hardware platforms and digital signal processing (DSP).

Working in partnership with Cochlear, out team integrated the existing devices and the wider eco-system associated with the Nucleus® 6 hearing solution – including backward compatibility with existing remote controls and accessories.

Operating at the 2.4 GHz frequency, extensive testing was completed to ensure reliable connection and streaming of audio to the sound processor in congested wireless environments – particularly with Bluetooth® hubs and Wi-Fi routers.

Using the same frequency, our engineers enabled the sound processor to quickly and seamlessly switch between the audio streaming from the True Wireless® range of devices and the Nucleus® 6 remote assistant and remote-control devices - providing a secure connection without signal drops or service interruption.

Users now have all the traditional benefits of their Cochlear hearing implant, along with the added benefit of wireless digital audio streaming. This offering has enriched Cochlear’s offering and transformed the lives of people with hearing difficulties. Download PDF version of the case study

 

 

Successful Rollout

Since launching the True Wireless® devices with the Cochlear Nucleus® 6 hearing implant, the wireless audio streaming has now been extended to the Nucleus® 7, the Baha® 4, and the Baha® 5 sound processors.

further roll-out

Contact one of our experts to discuss your needs and we’ll find the right solution for you.

Contact Us