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Reading this, I'm disappointed it has taken this long. Audio isn't rocket science and there are all kinds of clever things, from adaptive filtering and equalisation to echo cancellation to feedback elimination that should be standard issue on any audio processor.
I disagree, actually. Battery life must certainly be a huge issue in a hearing aid when running a DSP, even an audio DSP that doesn't have to run at relatively high clock speeds. DSPs in cell phones have been around for about 8 years, and back in 1999, cell phone batteries were probably 100x larger than the tiny batteries you can fit into a modern hearing aid. As a rough guess I think a DSP in a hearing aid would have been possible about three years ago, primarily because ultra low power DSP's are a specialty device (ie, very low volume (no pun intended)), meaning the market doesn't get the same attention as the consumer electronics market, and when it does, I'd also expect the development time to be longer. That's also about the time that bluetooth audio devices came out which are a roughly analogous product with maybe half the complexity.
you are the media you consume.
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