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Lifestyle service for people with hearing loss
February 12, 2016 Blog

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Lifestyle service for people with hearing loss

A local start-up is aiming to help elderly people who are hard of hearing.

Nessa launched a subscription service two weeks ago that comes with a hearing aid, a tablet and content, all for $48 a month for three years. Stores sell hearing aids for between $3,000 and $5,000 each. The tablet has pre-loaded content like the streaming services Spotify and Netflix, radio stations and a telephone service Skype that also has video conferencing options. New content services will be downloaded remotely from time to time.

Each new subscriber gets a hand-delivered box containing the hearing aid and tablet. The delivery person is also trained to show the customer how to wear the hearing aid.

Customers then talk to Nessa’s customer service staff on Skype, when the hearing aid is remotely tuned.

Co-founder Olivier Carnohan said: “We offer as many remote fittings as the customers want, all this is done in the convenience of their home. No need to go to an audiologist any more to be fitted in a soundproof room.”

Nessa developed several pieces of software for this effort, including the communication program that allows the hearing aid to be remotely tuned so that it fits properly.

“Helping a customer with hearing loss to hear again is only one part of the plan. We want our customers to be able to listen to music, watch movies and be able to communicate with their loved ones via video conferencing,” he added.

Hearing loss is a common condition for people over 50. About 12 to 14 per cent of people with hearing loss globally use a hearing aid, compared with only 2 per cent in Singapore.

Nessa has eight employees and started about six months ago. It has received a seven-figure funding from an investor who wants to remain unnamed.