What makes own voice issues so hard to solve?
Even when fitted open, wearers are often dissatisfied with the sound of their own voice. In such cases, the problem is most likely due to hearing aid output. This is because conventional hearing aids cannot distinguish the wearer’s voice from all other sounds. As a result, the wearer’s own voice is amplified the same as external sound and is perceived as too loud or distracting. And for exactly the same reason, when the HCP reduces the gain applied to the wearer’s own voice, other sounds from the environment are affected as well.
Hearing aid manufacturers have tried to take the wearer’s own voice into consideration. Modern hearing aids can identify speech based on its temporal and spectral characteristics and process it differently than other sounds, but they cannot identify the speaker from external voices. Existing solutions are ineffective because external sounds and the own voice are treated equally which results in one or the other being compromised.
What if there was a way for hearing aids to recognise their owner’s voice?