If you’ve ever struggled to make out what someone is saying on a mobile phone call, you’re not alone. One in six people in the UK suffer with hearing loss, rendering conversations over the phone problematic for millions of people.
At best, it’s annoying. At worst, it can mean you miss vital information from a doctor or healthcare professional, or struggle to stay in touch with loved ones, leaving you feeling isolated and alone.
But now help is at hand.
Audacious is a new mobile service provider that provides clearer calls. It does this by analysing your hearing through an online hearing test, called the Sound Check, then adjusting the sound of your calls to perfectly match your hearing profile.
Here’s how it works.
Heard the news?
Mobile call quality is a major issue for British consumers. Hearing problems and issues with call quality have led to almost a quarter of British phone users avoiding answering the phone altogether, with nearly a fifth feeling alone and isolated.
It’s not just those with hearing issues who are suffering. Even those with very good hearing can still struggle in loud environments, such as busy restaurants or near heavy traffic. With more of our lives now reliant on our smartphones, these problems can really hinder people’s quality of life.
Hear the difference
Audacious wants to help, with your own personal mobile sound. It’s the first mobile service provider that lets you adjust how calls sound based on your unique hearing profile, created with their Sound Check. Intrigued? Hear the difference for yourself.
Here’s how a standard mobile call would sound for someone without hearing loss:
And here’s how it sounds to someone with mild hearing loss:
Now this shows you how the previous clip would sound after being processed by the Audacious Clear Call technology:
How it works
Interested? It couldn’t be simpler to get started with Audacious.
First, just order an Audacious SIM. Plans cost either £10 or £20 a month, depending on how much data you want.
See the Audacious’ packages here.
Then you take the online Sound Check. It’s all done on the website, so you can do it from the comfort of your own home. It only takes 5 minutes and all you need is a computer or tablet and your current mobile.
You can retake the test whenever you like, so you can make sure your SIM is always suited to your needs, even if your hearing changes over time.
Using your results, Audacious will automatically tailor your calls to match your unique hearing profile. This is done by adjusting the frequencies you currently struggle to hear, and at the volume that best suits your hearing. Which means no more struggling to understand what someone is saying. That way, no matter where you are and how busy it is, you can always stay in touch with the people you love.
Putting it to the test
But don’t take our word for it. We asked reviewer Martin Hiley, who suffers with a significant hearing loss, to road test the service.
He found it quick and easy to take the hearing test and create his unique hearing profile using the Audacious website.
“Once you’ve set up your profile, the difference in the sound quality is immediate,” he writes. “It’s so much clearer and easier to decipher than anything I’ve ever experienced over the phone.
“Indeed, I found it was only when I heard the sound quality of my personal hearing profile from Audacious that I realised just what terrible sound quality I’d been putting up with for years.”
He praised the sound quality as “fuller, clearer and much easier to understand than anything I’ve ever heard through a handset.” This changed the way he used his phone. “And it’s given me the confidence to not only answer my phone when it rings, but to actually call people for a chat, which is something I’ve never felt able to do before.
“Even when I’m out and there’s a load of background noise, I can still call my friends to find out where they are and actually hear what they’re saying to me. It’s a total game-changer.”
It’s easy to underestimate the effect that clearer calls can have on a person’s life. “Finally there’s a way to combat the isolation, stress and sheer frustration that people with a hearing loss experience when using a mobile,” Martin writes. “And take it from me, it really can make a profound difference to the quality of a person’s life.
“The technology in the Audacious SIM has completely changed the way I interact with my phone and, consequently, my friends, family and colleagues. And you really can’t put a price on that.”
Want to find out more? Read our full review of Audacious.
How much it costs
You’ll be glad to hear that clearer calls don’t have to cost much more than standard ones. Audacious’ prices start at just £10 a month. That gets you 5GB of data, plus unlimited calls and texts. Or you can step up to the £20 a month tariff, which gives you 10GB of data a month, with unlimited calls and texts. You can switch from either tariff with just a month’s notice if you decide it’s not for you, so you won’t be locked into a lengthy contract.
All the tariffs come with a 28 day money back guarantee, and you can keep your current number. The Audacious SIMs are compatible with all mobile devices, and they use EE’s network - the UK’s largest 4G mobile phone network.
So what are you waiting for? A better quality of life is just around the corner.
Want to see if you can hear the difference? Take a look at our best Audacious SIM-only deals.