Starkey Hearing Technologies is an American privately-owned business which is based in Eden-Prairie, Minnesota. It’s one of the biggest hearing aid manufacturers in the world, and was founded in 1967.
The company currently employs more than 5,000 people at 24 facilities. Although it caters to 100+ markets all across the world, it is the only American-owned global hearing aid manufacturer.
The company’s owners are also philanthropists and their foundation has given more than one million hearing aids to people who need it around the globe.
(Great American companies, like NANO Digital Hearing Aids support American Veterans - do consider buying American: we've been on the market for ages and are trusted by millions)
What are the positive reviews of Starkey?
Users like that Starkey hearing aids have a broad range of styles available, that the company makes use of innovative technology, and that their models are compatible with smartphones.
What are the negative reviews of Starkey?
However, what people aren't too keen on with Starkey hearing aids is that they tend to be more expensive than other brands on the market, and that insurance doesn't always cover the cost of the hearing aids.
What hearing aid styles do Starkey have on offer?
Starkey hearing aids are available in numerous colors and styles which include wireless connectivity and specific features which target the amelioration of tinnitus. Starkey is well-known for its use of innovative technology in the design of their hearing aids and how it's made.
They have on offer six different types of aids which can be used to combat all levels of hearing loss:
- Invisible hearing aids
These are the features of the available hearing aids:
Livio Edge AI
Livio Edge AI features next-generation sound quality, single-sided technology, a rechargeable option, and feedback management.
More than that, the product offers bluetooth accessories, wireless streaming, and increased music fidelity.
The smartphone connectivity is accompanied by brain tracking, body tracking, fall detection and alerts, language translation, transcription, and Thrive Care.
The Livio AI offers great sound quality, feedback management, tinnitus technology, single-sided technology, and rechargeable options.
This option also has wireless streaming, music enhancement, bluetooth accessories, smartphone connectivity, brain and body tracking, and transcription features.
The Picasso has awesome sound quality, feedback management, and tinnitus technology. This option also offers wireless streaming, music enhancement, and bluetooth accessories.
What features are available with Starkey hearing aids:
Many of Starkey’s hearing aids use innovative technology so that users can stream music and phone calls. Using a smartphone, you can use the Thrive Hearing Control app in order to manage the hearing aid settings. This manages the following three settings:
This setting manages the sound quality and clarity through the use of speech enhancement features and noise control. You have the ability to establish presets for regular settings.
This stays on top of your steps, social appointments, and daily undertakings. It also has a fall-detection feature and includes heart rate monitoring.
Here you can troubleshoot using the Thrive Assistant and ask for remote amendments to your hearing aids without having to go to an office visit. The app can also transcribe conversations and send it to your smartphone.
It’s vital that you allow the Starkey hearing aids to have a four-month adjustment. The reacclimating to specific noises can be tiring to the brain. This is especially true if your hearing has been getting worse for a while. The Starkey hearing aids might need some adjustments so it’s best to keep in touch with your hearing professional at this time.
What are the financial implications for buying Starkey products?
The Starkey website doesn’t feature prices, but online retailers list prices ranging from $5,000 to $6,500 for a pair. This is because every piece is custom-made.
To help with the costs, Starkey hearing aids have partnered with Wells Fargo in order to provide financing options to eligible clients.
What are my financing options for Starkey hearing aids?
Depending on the model and features, Starkey hearing aids have varying costs. However, many hearing professionals do give you the option of payment plans so it’s best to consult directly with your audiologist.
However, you may be eligible for either free hearing aids or a discount through the following:
- Your union
- Veteran’s Affairs benefits
- A charity
- Your insurance provider/HMO
- Your employer
If you’re on Medicare or Medicaid, you might be able to get full or partial coverage of the costs. Most Medicare plans won’t pay for your hearing aids, however, if you’re a Medicare Advantage plan member you might be able to get some benefits. Medicaid, on the other hand, frequently covers hearing aids for adults and most often will pay completely for children’s hearing aids.
Where can you purchase Oticon products?
Starkey hearing aids are only available through authorized dealers, and the Starkey’s website does let you search for dealers near you.
Your authorized dealer will order your hearing aid directly from Starkey, and once it comes to them, you’ll be able to go in to have it fitted for your comfort. You’ll then be given all of the necessary information so that you know how to adjust the volume and use the app to set up and manage your hearing aid. This hearing professional will take you through the hearing aid adjustment problems that sometimes arise.
What are some of the leading hearing aids currently on the market?
Other than Starkey, these five hearing aids are some of the favorites. All of them are providers of certain features which appeal to different users.
Nano hearing aids
Hearing aids manufactured by Nano have stayed best-sellers because they have on offer various types, models, and styles. They take out the middleman and as such they are able to keep their costs low - the products go straight to the client from the manufacturer. Their products cater to various levels of hearing loss, and they provide BTE and ITE models - both with rechargeable options.
Hearing Assist has two BTE models and one ITE model on offer. Of the BTE models, one supports Bluetooth and can do hearing checks in order to see whether adjustments are required. All models are rechargeable.
Signia hearing aids
Signia hearing aids have numerous models on offer, but the Pure 312 is a crowd-favorite. It’s a small BTE device which users can take control of on their smartphones, or using a discreet remote-controlled device.
Widex hearing aids
Widex hearing aids allow the user to manage their environment through adjustable settings. On offer are numerous models, but the Evoke uses smart technology. The rechargeable models which they sell are used with zinc-air batteries.
Eargo hearing aids
Eargo hearing aids are great for people with mild-to-moderate hearing loss, and they do have BTE models on offer. Their most advanced model, however, is the NEO.
Why are Nano hearing aids popular compared to Starkey?
Starkey hearing aids are very costly, and too many people simply do not have access to those types of funds. Despite the financing options, most people require hearing aids which are less expensive. However, they do still want unique features which are technologically advanced and able to adjust sound according to their environment. This should be done using a bluetooth device.
This is what Nano hearing aids cost:
The cost of Nano hearing aids range from $379 for a pair of Nano RX2000 which are robust, rechargable, and easy-to-use, to $997 for the rechargeable model of the Nano X2
which is discreet, packed with features, and really easy to use. However, you could get the cheaper version for $697, but it's not rechargeable.
There are two Nano CIC models which have prices of $499 and $579 for a pair. Both are discreet, but the pricier model has Advanced DSP noise canceling and is rechargeable.
Nano also has a model which is more technologically-inclined; the smart hearing aid, the Nano Sigma, can be controlled by Bluetooth or a mobile app. It costs $797 and makes use of noise reduction technology. The wearer has the ability to take a hearing test using a smartphone which the hearing aid will automatically adjust to.
Why should you purchase Nano hearing aids?
When compared to other brands, Nano hearing aids are affordable to the average-joe. They can easily and securely be bought online whilst still providing their users with a higher sound quality. For the features that it has, the Nano Sigma is especially great for its price as it has noise reduction, a smartphone hearing test, and sound adjustments if necessary.
They have a money-back guarantee for 45 days after purchase, and a yearly protection plan comes with the hearing aids should there be accidental damage.
What to look for when deciding on a hearing aid:
Although unfortunate, customized hearing aids are quite expensive and many people simply do not have the financial resources to buy them. However, alternatives are available which are more cost-effective and some are high-quality.
Still, in order to make sure that you choose a high-quality hearing aid, it’s essential that you take the following into consideration:
Rather than buying analog, digital hearing aids are great because they offer more features because of the state-of-the-art technology used to produce them. Every user has unique hearing needs so features should include the ability to adjust sound according to your requirements and the environment. The comfort of the wearer is vital so that you can get the best sound experience that you can.
When products are so low-priced that it seems too good to be true, it probably is. Quality is essential when choosing a hearing aid as bad-quality products can damage hearing even more. Sometimes the low-priced hearing aids aren’t really hearing aids, but personal sound amplifiers.
When buying a hearing aid, you need a minimum of thirty days to see if it works for you. So be sure to buy a hearing aid that has a warranty.
Hearing aid scams
Being imported and sold without sufficient quality checks are many fake and inefficient hearing aids. Seeing as customized hearing aids are so expensive, many people feel that they have no other option than to buy online from unknown brands.
Every person with hearing loss has unique requirements and the notion of a ‘one size fits all’ doesn’t work in this case. Mail-order hearing aids aren’t always great and require proper research. Hearing professionals are always a good idea and most reputable brands will insist on proper consultations with audiologists so that you get what you need.
You’ll also want to make sure that the company you’re purchasing from makes use of the latest technology and materials to improve your experience with the sounds of everyday life.
However, it’s been established through experience that it’s vitally important to choose a product that has extensive trial periods (ideally 30-60 days). Authorized and recognized sellers understand the importance of this period and respect that it’s required.
If the price is so low, you can barely believe it, the products are often either old or outdated, don’t come with a fitting, or you’re required to buy it the same day.
Most people with hearing loss simply want the best way of hearing better at a price that they can reasonably afford. However, this isn’t always as simple as we might hope. Instead, clients have to measure what they need against what they can carry financially.
Starkey has a range of great hearing aids in styles to suit every lifestyle, however this comes with a massive price tag. Although there are financing options available, many people might still be excluded from being able to purchase one. Starkey hearing aids also have to be bought from a recognized seller which some may not have access to.
Nano, however, is available to buy solely at NanoHearingAids.com and they also offer numerous products which fall across the board in terms of cost so you’re more likely to find one that you can afford. Every hearing aid purchased comes with varying earbud sizes so that you’re sure to get one that fits.