Open 17 : Summer edition 2020
Unilateral hearing loss means that hearing is normal in one ear but there is hearing loss in the other ear. UHL can occur in both adults and children.
There are different types of unilateral hearing loss :
Unlike people who hear sounds in both ears, people who are unilaterally deaf cannot determine where the sound is coming from. In some cases this can be very dangerous. For example, if a car is coming towards them very fast, they will hear it but they will not be able to tell where the sound is coming from. To find out, they will have to check with their eyes, and this takes much more time. It is possible that this extra time will cause them an accident that they could have avoided if they could have felt where the sound was coming from.
This problem also concerns bilaterally deaf people.
A problem that concerns many people :
Every year, about 60,000 people in the United States acquire single-sided deafness.
Approximately 1 out of every 1,000 children is born with Unilateral hearing loss (UHL), and nearly 3% of school-age children have UHL.
1,2 billon people with disabling hearing loss in the world
Only 17% of them resort to using a hearing aid
We are three students who want to discover, learn and be useful to others :
Our team was created following Nour's proposal for a great project: helping people with hearing loss. This project won us all over and we decided to work together to try and make it happen.
Each of us has to adopt a teacher and student position at various moments of the day. Sometimes one may have more skills, and it’s crucial to help others progress and reach the same level.
There are various products that partially help people with hearing loss.
Bone conduction headphones :
These are earphones that do not use the features of the outer and middle ear. They transmit vibrations to the mastoid bone. These vibrations will be directly addressed to the inner ear which will perceive them as "normal" sound. However, people with a damaged inner ear will not be able to perceive this sound. Hearing people can also use these bone conduction headphones as normal headphones.
Ufirst Nuguna Neckband :
This is a headset for people with damaged inner ear and no other form of deafness. It is very bulky and very expensive.
Types of hearing loss :
Team 2: 360° sound
General Feedback --> What you liked ?
Need to work on time management. Also, it will great if they shorten the video to explain the problem. The video demo was a very nice example of problem, can it be shorter? Reference it in the talk more afterward.
Their areas of opportunities ?
Therapy and consumer product. It seems like a lot of existing technology can be used as a baseline, reducing the time to develop
Their strongest moment during the presentation?
The team is very clear about their objective. The confused sound heard by hearing-handicapped people at the beginning caught my interest immediately. The video/sound demonstration was nice
Our product "Le Cat" sound helps people with hearing impairment (partial or complete) who want to be aware of their surroundings and potential dangers by using a bone conduction headphone and 270-degree microphones that send signals to vibrating motors to know the direction of the sound.
Unlike usual bone-conducting headphones, people with sensorineural hearing loss can identify incoming dangers (cars, trains) and close voices that come from their “deaf side”.
Juliette Lebel, Mehdi Dolleans and Nour Ben Salem