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Apple will add 'hearing aid mode' to AirPods Pro with iOS 18 - Mark Gurman

Apple will add 'hearing aid mode' to AirPods Pro with iOS 18 - Mark Gurman
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AirPods already offer several features related to hearing health and accessibility, however, according to a report by Mark Gurman from Bloomberg (via 9to5mac), Apple plans to expand the capabilities of its headphones with a new "hearing aid mode."

Gurman notes that the AirPods Pro will not receive any hardware changes in 2024, but will be updated with a new "hearing aid mode" alongside the release of iOS 18.

Previous hearing features on AirPods included Live Listen, which was launched in iOS 12 in 2018 and allowed to essentially turn the iPhone into a microphone, transmitting recorded audio to the headphones. Also, in 2021, Apple introduced Conversation Boost, which amplified the microphone to better hear the person speaking nearby.

Meanwhile, a 2022 study showed that thanks to some hearing features, AirPods Pro can already be compared to much more expensive specialized devices. It is also worth noting that two years ago, the Food and Drug Administration established new recommendations approving a category of hearing aids available for purchase without prescriptions.

The announcement of iOS 18 is scheduled for the June WWDC conference and, as Gurman previously noted, Apple sees it as "one of the biggest iOS updates, if not the biggest in the company's history." In particular, it will involve the integration of artificial intelligence features in Siri, "Messages," Apple Music, Keynote, Pages, and the like. Also, iOS 18 will likely resemble visionOS and receive transparent menus.

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