MENLO PARK, CALIFORNIA — Earlens Corporation, a medical technology company that has created the world’s first nonsurgical hearing solution that directly vibrates the eardrum, announced today that they have entered into a strategic agreement with Verily, an Alphabet company, to develop next-generation capabilities for the Earlens® Contact Hearing Solution.
According to the Hearing Loss Association of America, about 20 percent of Americans, or 48 million people, report some degree of hearing loss. Yet, research estimates that only 1 in 5 individuals who might benefit from treatment seek help. According to the company, a major factor in the underutilization of hearing aids is disappointment with the quality and clarity of sound that conventional hearing devices, like acoustic hearing aids and amplifiers, provide. Earlens has developed a novel way to overcome these sound quality limitations by creating sound without an acoustic signal.
“Unlike traditional hearing aids that amplify sound through a speaker, Earlens uses a small lens to vibrate the eardrum, which directly activates the natural hearing process and delivers the broadest bandwidth available today. By combining our complementary sets of expertise, we aim to develop a next-generation hearing solution, as well as explore modalities for monitoring that may address conditions beyond hearing loss.”
Bill Facteau, Earlens President and CEO
Earlens believes Verily’s capabilities make Verily a natural partner as Earlens expands the capabilities and impact of its solutions. While some acoustic hearing aids have announced new AI capabilities and overall wellness benefits, they are typically only worn for part of the day, while the Lens in the Earlens solution remains in the ear at all times.
“Verily’s extensive experience in custom miniaturized, low-power and integrated medical devices uniquely position us to enhance the Earlens solution with a smaller, more efficient and more powerful behind-the-ear device,” said Brian Otis, chief technical officer, Verily. “Earlens is the only hearing solution that places a lens on the eardrum, and by combining our innovative medical, wearable and sensor technologies, we can further revolutionize the industry to support patients dealing with hearing challenges.”
Earlens is a privately held medical technology company committed to transforming the hearing experience for millions of people who suffer from hearing loss. The company has developed the Earlens® Contact Hearing Solution, which directly activates the hearing system, delivering the broadest bandwidth available today and superior sound quality. This revolutionary, nonsurgical hearing solution uses a small lens to vibrate the eardrum, replicating the natural hearing process. The Earlens® Contact Hearing Solution received FDA clearance in 2019 for a second generation of the Earlens technology.
Source: Earlens Corporation, Inc.