Great deep dive by Steven Levy for Backchannel on Apple’s Made for iPhone hearing aid initiative. Specifically, Levy’s story gets into the nitty-gritty of Apple’s collaboration with Cochlear to build iPhone-compatible cochlear implants for the deaf and hard-of-hearing.
There is a larger lesson here. At a macro level, the work Apple has done with hearing aids is important because it shows the company can and does deliver innovative products. Most in the mainstream press overlook these kinds of smaller yet not insignificant measures. So many fans and industry watchers are so laser-focused on the big and shiny (and profitable) products, like the iPhone, that they overlook stuff like the Made for iPhone hearing aid program. It is innovative work that’s clearly important to Apple, as well as the customers who rely on the technology to get the most from their iPhone. Put simply, to say Apple doesn’t innovate is myopic bullshit, and Levy’s story is proof.