Apple and Cochlear team to launch first sound processor implant for iPhone

Apple iPhone 3D touch
Jeffrey Van Camp/Digital Trends
On Wednesday, Cochlear announced it will be launching the first implant — the Nucleus 7 Sound Processor — made specifically for Apple devices, TechCrunch reports. The Australian-based medical device company is known for supplying the Nucleus cochlear implant for those with hearing loss.

Cochlear’s Nucleus 7 Sound Processor will now be able to stream sound directly to a patient’s surgically implanted sound processor using a compatible iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad. Past Cochlear sound processors required connecting it to an external Bluetooth device that would then pair with a smartphone while other implants controlled sound and features through an app. Although Cochlear does have the Nucleus Smart App with a wide range of features, the new implant will make it easier for users to adjust more simple functions.

With Apple’s integration into its iOS interface, users with the Nucleus 7 can access the controls through the Settings app on the iPhone. By going into Settings > General > Accessibility, they’ll find their Cochlear hearing implant listed under hearing devices. It will then pair the same way a Bluetooth device would pair with your iPhone or any other device. Users can control the volume settings simply using the iPhone volume controls and can send audio like phone calls or music into the implant as well.

Apple does have a history of working with hearing aids in the past like the ReSound LiNX — which initially launched in the U.K. in 2014 — that also connects directly to the iPhone. Apple developed a protocol that is offered at no charge to hearing aid and implant manufacturers to use with its devices.

By creating these types of features, Apple expressed to TechCrunch that it wants the iPhone to essentially be “the best piece of technology” people have ever used.  Adding new accessibility features to its operating system will help the company expand the support it can give to people on a global scale. With the iOS 11 public beta released, users can already experience new accessibility features added to the new operating system like “Type to Siri” and call audio routing.

The Cochlear Nucleus 7 Sound Processor is expected to be released in September, with significant improvements from its predecessors. It is said to not only be smaller and 24 percent lighter than previous models, but also has a longer battery life — making it ideal for children to use as well.

Product Review

Dolby makes the most comfortable headphones ever, and that's only the start

Dolby has taken its first step into product design with the new Dolby Dimension wireless headphones. Offering tons of features, supreme comfort, and a shocking price tag, the Dimension are a unique new take on audio in the home, and out.
Wearables

Google's Wear OS update 'H' promises battery life improvements

Google has rebranded its Android Wear operating system to Wear OS. Removing the Android name may help people better understand Google-powered smartwatches, which also play nice with iOS devices. 
Social Media

Facebook is rolling out a Messenger ‘unsend’ feature, and here’s how to use it

Facebook is starting to roll out a "remove message" feature for its Messenger app. It lets you delete a message in a thread within 10 minutes of sending it, and replaces it with a note telling recipients that it's been removed.
Product Review

Glas may be gorgeous, but this spendy thermostat is no smarter than the rest

A stunning OLED screen tops the prettiest thermostat we’ve reviewed in years. But GLAS lacks the brains required to justify its premium price. Read more about it in our full review.
Cars

Uber rolls out rewards program that lets its most loyal riders lock in prices

Uber launched a new loyalty program today called Uber Rewards. It offers frequent riders credits to Uber Eats, car upgrades, and the ability to lock in prices on their most traveled routes.
Gaming

15 tips for keeping your vault-dwellers alive in ‘Fallout Shelter’

The wasteland can be an unfriendly place, if you don't know what you're doing. Here are 15 tips that will help your vault thrive in Fallout Shelter, including information on questing.
Mobile

Motorola Moto G7: Here’s everything we know

The Moto G6 range is still relatively new to the market, but rumors have already started about the Moto G7, which is expected some time in 2019. Apparently, a G7 Power version will be joining the G7, G7 Play, and G7 Plus.
Mobile

T-Mobile's new Revvl 2, Revvl 2 Plus are now available for purchase

Last year, T-Mobile launched its own line of branded smartphones. As a follow-up to their predecessors, the carrier has unveiled the Revvl 2 and Revvl 2 Plus -- complete with a sleeker design. Here's everything you need to know.
Mobile

How to take great photos with the Pixel 3, the best camera phone around

You’ve scored yourself a new Google Pixel 3 or Pixel 3 XL, and you want to take advantage of that incredible camera. We’ve got everything you need to know right here about how to snap the best photos with your Pixel 3.
Smart Home

Huawei could soon take on Google and Amazon with a new digital assistant

According to a report from CNBC, Huawei is working on a new digital assistant that could try to take on the likes of Google and Amazon's Alexa. Huawei already has a digital assistant in China, but the new one will be aimed at markets…
Mobile

Leak shows a third, budget Google Pixel 3 with a Snapdragon 670, headphone jack

The Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL are considered to be two of the best Android smartphones, but it looks like Google could be prepping a third. A budget Pixel 3 device that boasts some of the best features of the other two has been leaked.
Mobile

Use multiple phone numbers on one device with Verizon’s ‘My Numbers’ app

For those who have separate phone numbers and devices for your work and personal lives, Verizon wants to help you get more organized. With its new "My Numbers" app, you can use up to four additional phone numbers on a single smartphone.
Smart Home

All the best Amazon Black Friday deals for 2018

Amazon may be an online-only retailer, but that doesn’t mean its Black Friday sales are anything to sniff at. In fact, due to its online status, Amazon has huge flexibility with the range of products and deals it can offer. Here's our…
Mobile

Need a quick battery boost? Try one of our favorite portable chargers

Battery life still tops the polls when it comes to smartphone concerns. If it’s bugging you, then maybe it’s time to snag yourself a portable charger. Here are our picks of the best portable chargers.