New Victorian Hearing Aid Tech is music to all ears

Close up of modular hearing aid

The Victorian Government is supporting local, world-first technology that will give Victorians better access to more convenient, affordable hearing aids.

The new Facett hearing aid device allows users to test their hearing and manage their personalised settings in their own home, via a computer or mobile device with the help of online support.

The device’s unique modular design allows users to swap out flat batteries and replace old hardware with new upgrades instead of having to buy a completely new device.

This ground-breaking medtech innovation is the result of a collaboration between Blamey Saunders Hears, Extel Technologies, RMIT and Swinburne University – a partnership that has brought hearing aid development, design and manufacturing to Victoria.

Watch the video to learn more about the world’s first set-fit modular hearing aid, manufactured and designed in Victoria.

Video transcript

New Victorian Hearing Aid Tech is Music to all Ears

[Vision:  New design of hearing aid]
Dr Elaine Saunders – Managing Director, Blamey Saunders
This is the world’s first self-fit and modular hearing aid.
[Vision:  Computer graphic of new modular hearing aid]
This is Australian Victorian innovation. And it’s being manufactured here in Victoria as well.

Phillip Adams – Broadcaster
I’ve often talked about life after death. I now enjoy life after deaf.
[Vision:  Vision of lady enjoying hearing – Phillip Adams speaking]
This operation, this device, this company breaks down the barriers.
[Vision:  Man enjoying conversation]

Philip Daladakis – Minister for Innovation and the Digital Economy
What a wonderful day to be in Victoria for the design, the build, the creation, the knowledge is all retained right here in Melbourne, Victoria.

[Vision:  Photographer taking photos of people]

James Black – Musician – Facett User
When I first started suffering hearing loss I denied it for a long time. I tried to pretend I wasn’t suffering from something, until my wife and my family just got so annoyed that I was asking to repeat questions all the time.

[Vision:  Computer illustration of modular hearing aid – computer vision of placement of hearing aid]
I don’t have to do that anymore.
[Vision:  Computer graphic of how hearing aid works]
So they’re very happy and then in many ways that’s my first impression.
[Vision:  James Black speaking]
I can hear much more clearly.
[Vision:  People interacting using hearing aids]

Ellie Kenna – Facett User
Initially I actually thought they were so beautiful. I chose the white glossy colour.
[Vision:  Vision showing someone connecting hearing aid to battery]
And I just think it’s really pretty.
[Vision:  Vision showing hearing aid connected together – Ellie Kenna speaking]
So initially I thought, obviously the functionality of it is amazing, but I also thought you can have the functionality plus the beautiful ear piece as well to match as an accessory with your jewellery.
[Vision:  Vision of people talking]

Leah Heiss – Industrial Designer – Facett/RMIT
It’s really about trying to sort of shift hearing aids from disability to desirability.
[Vision:  Vision of different type of earpiece]
So trying to make them look very different to what exists already.

[Vision:  People looking at items in showcase]

Dr Elaine Saunders – Managing Director, Blamey Saunders
The vision for us is to really try and help as many people as possible hear, wherever they are, whether they’re housebound or whether they’re in remote Victoria, remote Australia.
[Vision:  Vision of Core and rechargeable battery]
And to remove the barriers of cost, access, appearance and, for want of a better word, fiddliness.

[Vision:  Earpiece – Fully Programmable]
[Vision:  James Black speaking]
I can hear you beautifully and I look charming with mine, so I picked silver.
My wife says “it really goes with your hair.”

[VICTORIA State Government]
[Speaker:  Authorised by Victorian Government, 1 Treasury Place, Melbourne]