Apple is working with the World Health Organization in its Hearing Study to improve hearing health and identify problems with data collected from many users. It is aimed to use the collected data to identify problems related to hearing health and to produce solutions.
Hearing Study, a project conducted by Apple with the University of Michigan School of Public Health, enables users to participate in scientific research using technology that is an integral part of daily life. Basically, the application that collects data on the hearing health of the users, provides up-to-date information to medical research in this respect. The data obtained from this study of Apple and the University of Michigan School of Public Health are shared with the World Health Organization (WHO).
Hearing problems are one of the most important problems of today, according to the data released by WHO, and WHO predicts that more than 700 million people will have to struggle with serious hearing loss problems by 2050. Behind this annoying data are the reasons such as the noise we are exposed to, especially in the city life we set up, or the use of headphones and the noisy working environment.
Data collected through the Apple Hearing Study highlight the seriousness of the situation:
With the Apple Hearing Study, users are providing hearing health data to Apple with their iPhone or Apple Watch. This creates a kind of research group in which a large audience participates and has a high data diversity. According to this heavily attended Apple Hearing Study data, 25 percent of respondents experience average daily exposure to environmental sound at a level higher than the WHO recommended limit. In addition, about 50 percent of respondents work or have worked in a noisy workplace before.
There are also some situations where we put ourselves at risk. For example, the average weekly headphone exposure for one in 10 participants is above the WHO recommended limit. Using headphones at high volume for a long time poses a risk to hearing health.
One of the points where the data is getting more serious is that 10 percent of users have been diagnosed with hearing loss by a professional. This is a very high rate for a study that examines high participation and direct user experience, and it shows that we are not far from the data that WHO predicts for 2050.