Rate-Constrained Collaborative Noise Reduction for Wireless Hearing Aids

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Executive Summary

Hearing aids are electronic, battery-operated sensing devices which aim at compensating various kinds of hearing impairments. Recent advances in low-power electronics coupled with progresses made in digital signal processing offer the potential for substantial improvements over state-of-the-art systems. Nevertheless, efficient noise reduction in complex listening scenarios remains a challenging task, partly due to the limited number of microphones that can be integrated on such devices. The authors investigate the noise reduction capability of hearing instruments that may exchange data by means of a rate-constrained wireless link and thus benefit from the signals recorded at both ears of the user. They provide the necessary theoretical results to analyze this collaboration mechanism under two different coding strategies.

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