SOURCE: OtoSense, Inc.

Sound Recognition. Where It Matters

September 08, 2014 09:30 ET

New OtoSense Mobile App Enables Deaf and Hard of Hearing People to See Audio Alerts and Other Sounds on Their Smartphones

App Notifies With Flash, Vibration and Third-Party Notification, Enhancing Personal Safety and Quality of Life

CAMBRIDGE, MA--(Marketwired - September 08, 2014) - OtoSense, Inc., a developer of sound recognition software, today launched the first mobile app that identifies and distinguishes the source of incoming audio alerts, including alarms, sirens, timers, bells and other sounds, turning smartphones and tablets into assistive alerting devices for the deaf and hard of hearing. The app, which shares the same name as the company, is available now for download on Android devices on the Google Play store.

OtoSense works immediately upon download, coming with a built-in library of standard fire and smoke alarm sounds found in the U.S. and Europe. Additionally, OtoSense can be personalized by users, recording and storing the most significant sounds of their environment. An Internet connection is not required for users to be notified of their sounds via flash and vibration.

"Hearing and being aware of sounds keeps people safe. When you think about it, you often hear things before you see anything. A knock at the door, a smoke alarm, and even the oven buzzer are just a few sounds with time-sensitive information," says Sebastien Christian, founder and CEO. "OtoSense is a convenient, affordable and effective way for people, no matter where they are, to be aware of and get notified of sounds they can't hear, improving their personal safety and helping them to live more autonomous lives."

Joyce Edmiston, the blogger for XpressiveHandz, who is hard of hearing commented, "I can't believe someone hasn't thought of this before. I can't wear my hearing aids every day and without them, I'm unable to hear the doorbell, a microwave beeping, or a teakettle whistling. It's fantastic that with this new app I will finally know the source of sounds around me and can react as needed."

Every time an individual uses OtoSense and teaches it new sounds, it improves the sound recognition software, and this improves everyone's experience using the app. Also, when there is a network connection, any sound recorded by OtoSense on an individual's smartphone is automatically synced with their tablet and/or other smartphones via the cloud, effectively creating a "listening network" that is capable of notifying users via flash, vibration and third-party notification including SMS text and push notification, of their sounds anywhere they go in the world. 

According to the World Health Organization, there are 390 million people who suffer from a disabling hearing loss. In the United States, there are 48 million people who report a hearing loss according to the Hearing Loss Association of America. 

"OtoSense addresses an existing unmet need in a market largely dominated by devices with singular sound applications and/or limited sound awareness choices," says Erik Viirre, M.D., Ph.D, of the Department of Neuroscience, University of California in San Diego, who serves as a scientific advisor to the company. "OtoSense is far more adaptive by offering deaf and hard of hearing people a subtle yet effective means of interacting and reacting to the sounds around them."

About OtoSense, Inc.
We are a team of speech and language pathologists, physicists, and engineers, working together to develop the most advanced sound recognition engine, and to deliver it, as first imagined, as a mobile application, turning smartphones and tablets into powerful, portable and adaptable assistive alerting devices for the deaf and hard of hearing. Founded in January 2014, OtoSense is a development-stage company, based in Cambridge, MA. For more information, please go www.OtoSense.com and follow us at www.Facebook.com/otosense, www.twitter.com/otosense and www.instagram/otosense or email explorers@otosense.com.

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