Hearing aids are getting better with Bluetooth and apps just as more Americans need them

USATODAY 

Interactive options, including support for apps, help listeners shape their listening experience. Nearly 50 million Americans have lost at least some of their hearing. A new generation of hearing aids employs technology like Bluetooth and pairs with digital assistants to make them more useful at home and at work. "Because people are living and working longer, the need for hearing aids is actually on the rise," says Dr. Stephen Kirsch, an audiologist in Santa Monica, Calif.. "Computer chip technology has greatly improved, providing better audibility but not necessarily better intelligibility – yet – but there are other advancements, too." Technology like hearing aids could help about 29 million Americans, says the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders.