July 24th, 2019
For the 466 million people in the world who have hearing loss, the inability to hear a conversation or the sounds around you can be isolating. Without clear sound, it’s challenging to connect to the people around you and fully experience the world. And simply asking others to speak louder (or turn up the TV volume) isn’t a helpful solution because people hear more clearly at different audio frequencies.
Sound Amplifier is an Android Accessibility app that helps people hear more clearly, and now it’s available on Android devices running Android 6.0 Marshmallow and above. Using machine learning, we sorted through thousands of publicly available hearing studies and data to understand how people hear in different environments and created a few simple controls.
Here’s how it works: When you plug in your headphones and use Sound Amplifier, you can customize frequencies to augment important sound, like the voices of the people you are with, and filter out background noise. It can help you hear conversations in noisy restaurants more clearly, amplify the sound coming from TV at personalized frequency levels without bothering others, or boost the voices of presenters at a lecture.
For some people, it may be hard to know when Sound Amplifier is detecting or enhancing sound. So we added an audio visualization feature that shows when sound is detected, helping you visualize the changes you’re making to it. Like a volume number on your TV, you know how much the sound is boosted even if you can’t hear it yet. There are a couple of new visual updates, too. You can launch the app directly from your phone’s home screen instead of tapping into Accessibility settings, and with the reorganized the control settings, you can easily tap between boosting your sound or filtering out the background noise.
Sound Amplifier is the latest step in our commitment to make audio clear and accessible for everyone. And we’ll continue to improve the app through new features that enhance sound for all types of hearing.
Download the Sound Amplifier app on Google Play today on your Android device to enhance the sound around you.