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History: Technology for hearing impairments

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  • 1952 - Sonotone released the first hearing aid, the Sonotone 1010, that utilized the transistor for $229.50. Prior models used vacuum tubes. This was also the first commercial use of the transistor.
  • 1956 - Beltone releases the Beltone Hear-and-See, the first ear-level binaural (two ear) hearing aid which was hidden in a pair of eye glasses.[1]
  • 1970 - The National Institute of Standards begins an investigation to see if a portion of a television signal could be used to send precise time information on a nationwide basis. This investigation eventually led to the creation of closed captioning.[1]
  • 2007 (August 1) - Otolaryngologists develop a new, implantable hearing aid called the Bone Anchored Hearing Aid (BAHA). A transmitter worn behind the hear vibrates sending sound received by a deaf ear through the skull and over to the good ear. [3]


  1. "A Brief History of Captioned Television." National Captioning Institute, Inc. Accessed on February 28, 2008.
  2. Cochlear Implant Timeline. Deafness Research Foundation. 2008. Accessed on February 7, 2008.
  3. Scientists Identify Molecular Cause For One Form Of Deafness. Science Daily. February 5, 2007. Accessed on February 1, 2008.