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Sennheiser’s MobileConnect Brings Assistive Listening Over WiFi

Offers live streaming of audio to a user's own device to cost effectively enable access to hearing impaired students and audience members.

As part of its ongoing commitment to inclusion, Sennheiser is advancing the availability of assisted listening solutions for universities, with its MobileConnect solution.

By offering the ability to live stream audio via WiFi to a user’s own device, the system is ideally suited to academic institutions wishing to quickly and cost effectively enable access to education to hearing impaired students.

At MobileConnect’s heart is the ConnectStation, a streaming server providing low latency multi-channel audio streaming over WiFi in auditoriums, classrooms, theaters, gymnasiums and wherever the campus WiFi is available.

As MobileConnect operates over the existing WiFi infrastructure, it is fast and cost-effective to install and integrates with existing network infrastructure and audio equipment. Without the need for bulky equipment, hearing impaired individuals can use their choice of smart device and headphones to listen to audio via the MobileConnect app, which is available free of charge for iOS and Android.

“MobileConnect is a disruptive solution that elegantly rethinks accessibility,” explains Xenios Maroudas, portfolio manager of Business Communication at Sennheiser. “MobileConnect utilizes existing network technologies and a “bring your own device” approach. The system thus reduces the total cost of ownership for organizations such as universities by removing barriers to being able to offer a genuinely practical to the needs of hearing impaired students.”

In addition to academia, MobileConnect can also be used to complement digital signage, offer assistive listening, audio description or even simultaneous translation. Its virtually unlimited fields of application include theaters, houses of worship or conference centers.

Meeting individual hearing needs with the Personal Hearing Assistant, Sennheiser’s MobileConnect app can also be tailored to a user’s particular hearing needs via the Personal Hearing Assistant.

This software makes it possible not only to adjust volume but also to adapt speech intelligibility and sound quality, including the amplification and dynamic range of high and low-frequency audio content. Users can adjust sound to their particular requirements by simply sliding their finger across an on screen control until it is just right. The features were developed in close collaboration with hearing experts at the Fraunhofer Institute for Digital Media Technology as part of Sennheiser’s ongoing efforts to develop dedicated solutions for inclusion.

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