I have decided to buy a loopset for use with my mobile phone. I referred to the problems and possible solutions of using a mobile phone with hearing aids in a previous post.
While the Bluetooth device sold by the RNID seems an elegant solution to the problem, I noticed that the battery life isn’t very good. They quote 10 hours standby and 8 hours talking time. While I am unlikely to want to talk on the phone for more than 8 hours between charges, 10 hours in worrying: I could easily be out and about for longer than that.
The device that hooks over the ears is not at all attractive so that leaves the third possibility, the Nokia LPS4 loopset. This also fits around your neck (I am thinking of buying a colourful non-metallic necklace to entwine with it to make it prettier!) like the Bluetooth version but instead of communicating by radio, plugs into the phone. There is a microphone in the loopset itself so you don’t even need to dig out your phone to receive a call.
I normally carry my phone in my handbag (or “manbag”, if you prefer), so I could plug the phone into the loopset and forget it until the phone rings. At that point, all I have to do is press the button on my hearing aid that switches it to Telecoil because the phone is set to auto-answer. In noisy conditions I can use both ears!
The LPS4 isn’t cheap but it is about half the price of the Bluetooth device. As with most new things, I expect to learn from using it and this will help me decide what to buy next time.
I have already tried out the Telecoil. This was when we bought train tickets the other day. I switched to Telecoil and could have the ticket clerk perfectly. When you switch to the ‘t’ setting, the hearing aids stop picking up circumambient sound, making it even easier to hear what you want to hear.
More on this when I have received it and tried it out.