When it comes to optimizing your hearing, you have several different devices from which to choose, from several different brands. Though making comparisons between brands and models takes time and research, it's important that you make thorough comparisons so you can ultimately choose the best device for you. To help you in your search, we've narrowed down your options to two top brands: Phonak and Oticon.
Aside from those traits, they differ. For instance, Oticon focuses more on providing consumers with technologically advanced hearing aids, whereas Phonak strives to provide a vast assortment of hearing aids. Both companies have developed technology that allow users to hear sound from their smartphones and other devices.
In terms of features, Phonak and Oticon are fairly competitive. For instance, Oticon was the first hearing aid company to offer devices that could connect to the internet via IFTTT, a web-based network that lets users create “If this, then that” rules to automate a variety of tasks. Oticon users can stream the sound from their televisions directly to their hearing aids and even use their aids as smart home control devices in some instances.
Phonak utilizes Marvel technology, which produces crystal-clear sound and also allows users to stream sound from smart devices. Though users cannot use the system to control home functions such as dimming the lights or turning on the television, it does enable them to recharge aids and provides access to the Phonak app. Below is a side-by-side view of the features of each manufacturer:
|Chipset Used||AutoSense OS 3.0||Velox|
|Wireless||Bluetooth Classic||2.4 GHz (low energy)|
Though both companies offer devices that boast 360-degree hearing against background noise, reviews suggest that Oticon's technology is slightly more advanced than that of Phonak's. Oticon's Opn S hearing aid features OpenSound Navigator, which provides the best speech-in-noise results of any other hearing aid on the market today. The technology in this small device scans the environment 100 times per second and eliminates the noise between words. This process provides users with a crystal-clear understanding of whatever it is he or she wishes to hear. Moreover, the Opn S processor is quick, allowing the user to rapidly understand and converse at a normal rate of conversation.
As a company that strives to provide a variety of hearing aids to suit a variety of individual needs and lifestyles, Phonak's collection includes devices that come in a variety of shapes and sizes. One of its most popular options can be worn in the ear and is virtually invisible. The titanium model, which is half the thickness of existing hearing aid shells, is another favorite. The company also makes a model that is designed for individuals who live with single-sided hearing loss.
As a company focused on innovation, Oticon's solutions truly are miracle workers. The company's hearing aids provide clear, rich sound to those with even the most profound hearing loss and drowns out a significant amount of background noise.
Both Phonak and Oticon offer comprehensive resources on their websites, which helpfully categorize common FAQs and concerns. Phonak comes with a support app that provides step-by-step guidance for handling, maintenance and customization. Oticon's Genie does more or less the same, except it doesn't come in app form. You can also contact both companies via email or a 1-800 number.
Costs and Pricing
The cost of each company's hearing aids varies depending on the device model a user chooses to get. Neither company advertises cost on their website, but the price range, based on outside data, is $1,600 to $4,200 for Phonak and $2,000 to $4,700 for Oticon.
What We Think
When it comes to quality products, there is no doubt in our minds that both of these brands can provide. However, which brand to place your trust in is all dependent upon your needs and lifestyle.
Phonak offers a range of products in a variety of shapes, sizes and colors. If you do not want others to know you wear a hearing aid, this brand has you covered, as it innovated the world's only 100% invisible hearing aid. Its technology is advanced, and its features are user-friendly. In terms of cost, its models are slightly less expensive than Oticon's.
Oticon may not boast as many options as Phonak, but its technology is far more sophisticated. The company prides itself on giving customers the best hearing experience possible, as well as allowing them to customize their devices to suit their needs. The quality of sound alone may be enough to convince users to spend the extra money for an Oticon device.