Hearing Aids and iPhones

If you have a Bluetooth enabled hearing aid and an iPhone, your iPhone may be able to detect your hearing aid and work with its settings to improve sound on your phone calls.  Made for iPhone (MFi) hearing aids can help you hear more clearly on your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch.  Read on to learn how to pair your hearing aid with your iOS device, control it and more. To find out which hearing aids are compatible with your iOS device, click on the URL at the end of this article and scroll down to Compatible hearing devices.

Pair and connect

When you pair a Made for iPhone hearing aid to your iOS device, audio from your iOS device goes to your hearing aid electronically, rather than as sound waves through the air.  (Think of your iPhone as a radio station and your hearing aid as a radio.)  If you turn off your hearing aid, you need to reconnect it when you want to use it with your iOS device again.  (If you turn your radio off, you have to turn it on again in order to hear your chosen radio station.)

To pair your hearing aid, follow these steps:

  • Open your hearing aid’s battery doors.
  • On your iOS device, tap Settings > General > Accessibility > Hearing > MFi Hearing Aids.
  • If Bluetooth is off, turn it on under Devices.
  • Close your hearing aid’s battery doors. Your iOS device will search for your hearing aid.
  • Under Devices, tap the name of your hearing aid.
  • Tap Pair when you see the pairing request on the screen. If you have two hearing aids, you’ll get two requests.  Pairing could take up to a minute.

You can start using your hearing aid when you see it listed under Devices and it has a check mark next to it.

Connect when you turn on your hearing device

When you turn off your hearing aid, it disconnects from your iOS device. When you turn on your hearing aid, open and close the battery doors on your hearing aid to connect again.  (Opening and closing your hearing aid’s battery door is like turning a radio “off” and “on”.)

Control your MFi hearing aid

You can use your iOS device to see your hearing aid’s battery life, adjust the volume, turn on Live Listen, and more. To control your hearing aid, use Settings or the Accessibility Shortcut.

Set preferences for features that you control with your iOS device by going to

Settings > General > Accessibility > Hearing. Then tap MFi Hearing Aids.

This is an excerpt from an Apple online article.  For a fuller explanation, you can find the entire article at: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201466

Jeanne Dyer is the Technology Coordinator for OLLI-USF. Jeanne has taught many Technology courses for OLLI since 2010. She has also developed a website and courses for OLLI instructors; designs and produces signage, forms and manuals for OLLI, and takes charge of logistics for OLLI’s Open Houses. This fall, Jeanne is teaching iPhone From Start to Finish, iPhoneography 2: Using Third Party Apps to Edit Photos on iPhone & iPad, Secure Your Apple ID: What to Do if it is Compromised and What’s New in iOS 12?.


2 Replies to “Hearing Aids and iPhones”

  1. Thanks for the article on pairing Bluetooth-compatible hearing aids with IOS devices. I forwarded it to my uncle in hopes he has or will be prompted to get Bluetooth-compatible hearing aids. If he does, my aunt will be eternally grateful to you, Jeanne!!! Not only will he enjoy hearing app-based and Web-based audio, but his hearing aids will be more effective in other settings.

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