Information For Customers Who Are Deaf Or Hard Of Hearing.
Hearing Aid Compatible Cell Phones
Some people that use hearing aid devices may experience difficulties when using a cell phone.
The cell phone industry and consumer groups representing
the hard of hearing have been working for years to study this matter
and develop standards and solutions to reduce the likelihood of such
difficulties. In addition, the Federal Communications Commission has
set forth requirements for wireless carriers and the cell phone
device manufacturers. Much progress has been made and there are
now a large number of hearing aid compatible (HAC) mobile devices
available to customers.
There are two different ratings of hearing aid compatible cell phones:
M-Ratings - Reduced Hearing Aid Device Interference
Some people with a hearing aid device experience a buzzing or whining
noise when using a cell phone. This noise is caused when the electronics
within the hearing aid device pick up and demodulate radio frequency
(RF) and/or electromagnetic interference (EMI) emitted by the cell phone.
Cell phones with an M-Rating of M3 or M4 meet FCC requirements and are
less likely to generate interference to hearing devices than cell
phones that are not labeled. M4 is the better/higher of the two ratings.
Hearing devices may also be measured for immunity to this type of interference.
Your hearing device manufacturer or hearing health professional can help you
find results for your hearing device. The more immune your hearing aid is,
the less likely you are to experience interference noise from mobile phones
and other sources of RF/EMI such as computer monitors and florescent lighting.
T-Ratings - Compatible with Hearing Aids with Telecoils
A telecoil is a small device that is built into some hearing aids for use
with the telephone as well as assistive listening devices. Not all hearing aids have telecoils.
Cell phones with a T-Rating of T3 or T4 meet FCC requirements and are more
likely to work well for people who use hearing aids with telecoils. T4 is the better/higher of the two ratings.
enTouch Wireless Policy
enTouch Wireless provides free cell phones to California residents
with documented hearing needs. We source current, industry standard
mobile devices. The cell phone models vary over time.
Because user experiences are varied and highly individualized,
enTouch recommends you call Customer Service if the FREE cell
phone supplied under the enTouch Lifeline program is not working
with your hearing aid. We cannot guarantee that we will have an
enTouch FREE cell phone model that will be compatible with your Hearing Aid.