Apple WWDC 2024: What Happened to “Hearing Aid Mode”?

by | Jun 20, 2024 | Hearing Aids, News

The absence of “Hearing Aid Mode” raises several possibilities. Could Apple be holding back this announcement for the launch of their 3rd Generation AirPods Pro?

Did you catch the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) yesterday? With so much buzz about Apple potentially unveiling a “Hearing Aid Mode,” I was ready for the big reveal. 

As always, Apple didn’t disappoint, unveiling a slew of updates, with the spotlight on their new “Apple Intelligence,” promising iPhone users a robust AI experience right in their pockets. 

But amidst the excitement, what happened to “Hearing Aid Mode”? Well, to put it bluntly, it didn’t make an appearance. 

Instead, Apple introduced two new hearing-related features that, while impressive, weren’t the game-changer many of us were hoping for: 

Voice Isolation Feature 

The first new addition is the “Voice Isolation Feature,” designed to minimize background noise. Leveraging the active noise-cancellation capabilities of AirPods, this function focuses on cutting out wind and other ambient sounds during calls. 

It’s a fantastic addition for anyone who’s ever struggled to maintain a clear conversation in noisy environments, making calls more intelligible and less frustrating. 

Music Haptics 

The second feature, aimed specifically at those who are hard of hearing, is “Music Haptics.”  

This innovative feature plays taps, textures, and refined vibrations in sync with music audio, providing a unique way to experience music not just through sound but through tactile feedback, allowing you to feel the rhythm and nuances of your favorite tracks. 

The Missing “Hearing Aid Mode” 

So, what happened to the much-anticipated “Hearing Aid Mode”? Despite Chief Correspondent Mark Gurman’s reliable track record in reporting Apple news, it seems he either missed the mark this time or the feature isn’t ready for prime time yet. His predictions sparked significant interest and speculation, but Apple’s omission leaves us wondering about what’s next. 

The absence of “Hearing Aid Mode” raises several possibilities. Could Apple be holding back this announcement for the launch of their 3rd Generation AirPods Pro? This scenario seems quite plausible.  

Another possibility is that this feature might be part of the iOS 19 launch in 2025. Alternatively, Apple could be planning to integrate hearing aid functionalities subtly through their existing tools and features, gradually enhancing the user experience. 

The Future of Hearing Health at Apple 

Apple has already made notable strides in health and wellness technology with features like fall detection, ECG monitoring, and blood oxygen level measurement. The introduction of voice isolation and music haptics shows their ongoing commitment to accessibility and inclusivity. 

As for “Hearing Aid Mode,” it’s clear that Apple is continuously exploring ways to enhance the lives of those with hearing impairments, even if this particular feature isn’t ready yet. 

I’m eagerly waiting to see how these new features perform and how Apple continues to innovate in the realm of hearing health. As soon as the updates are available, I’ll be downloading them to put these new tools to the test. 

What’s Next? 

We’re closely monitoring these developments, staying at the forefront of the latest news, and we’ll keep you updated. 

If you have any questions, need assistance, or would like to discuss your hearing challenges, don’t hesitate to request a callback or call us at (713) 827-1767. 

We’re here to support you every step of the way. 

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Jana Emola-Austin, Au.D.

Raised in Bryan, Texas, Jana completed her undergraduate studies at Texas A&M University before attending the University of North Texas with an ambition to earn her master’s degree in speech pathology. However, a required audiology class soon set her on a new career path. She became enthralled with the subject and says audiology resonated with her because it involved everything she enjoys – helping people to improve their lives and relationships with others and using technology to make positive impacts. Following this revelation, Jana went on to graduate with her Doctor of Audiology degree. After many years of assisting patients in the clinic on a daily basis, Jana’s main responsibilities at Allison Audiology have shifted to a management role. She now works behind the scenes focusing on administrative, management, and marketing responsibilities.