What Happened to “Hearing Aid Mode” at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference 2024?

06/20/2024 | Hearing Aids, Industry News, News, Technology

With all the rumors going around about “Hearing Aid Mode” getting announced at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference last week, I was eagerly awaiting the big reveal of this groundbreaking new feature from the tech giant.

While I was suitably amazed by “Apple Intelligence,” the latest jump in AI that promises iPhone users some amazing new features, I waited for “Hearing Aid Mode” to be announced… and it didn’t happen.

“Hearing Aid Mode” didn’t make an appearance at the conference at all. After all the rumors and press coverage, what happened to it?

We didn’t go without hearing-related features. They just aren’t the ones we expected.

Voice Isolation Feature

Using the already present noise-cancellation features in AirPods, “Voice Isolation Feature” will be a huge help for those who can’t maintain a clear conversation in busy spaces. This new feature focuses on cutting out wind noise and other ambient noise, helping make calls more intelligible—and less frustrating.

Music Haptics

This other new feature will add taps and textures played alongside your music for an immersive experience that goes beyond just listening to the music itself. Aimed at those who are hard of hearing, “Music Haptics” provides a unique way to experience music through both sound and tactile feedback.

Where Is “Hearing Aid Mode”?

So, what happened to “Hearing Aid Mode”? Many news outlets were surprised to see its absence, especially those that typically report correct Apple predictions.

My thoughts? Maybe “Hearing Aid Mode” isn’t ready for prime time yet.

That, or Apple is holding back on “Hearing Aid Mode” until the launch of the third generation of Apple AirPods Pro, the hardware rumored to be the best match with the new feature. Along with iOS 19, predicted to launch in 2025, they could just be waiting for the most opportune time to drop the new feature we’re all so excited for.

We’ll see what happens in the coming months—and I’ll be sure to keep you posted on the latest news.

Hearing Health’s Future at Apple

Apple has made many great advancements in health and wellness technology, especially with the integrated features in their devices like ECG monitoring, fall detection, and blood oxygen level measurements. Introducing voice isolation and music haptics shows that they are staying dedicated to accessibility and inclusivity for their customers with hearing impairments.

As for “Hearing Aid Mode,” we’ll have to wait and see if it shows up in early 2025 with iOS 19, or the Apple AirPods Pro 3. Either way, I’m excited to try out the new features when they go live!

If you’re looking for some answers to your questions about hearing care or would like to start your hearing health journey with us, please feel free to schedule an appointment or contact us at (541) 612-7555.

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Erika Shakespeare CCC-A

Erika Shakespeare, CCC-A, specializes in pediatric and adult diagnostics and amplification. Working with adults to help manage tinnitus and hearing loss since 2002, she is an expert in both of these areas. Additionally, she is a pediatric audiology mentor and educator for pediatric audiologists across the country and is one of the most respected experts on pediatric audiology.

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