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New Hearing Aid Uses Your Tooth To Transmit Sound

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 4 years ago | from the new-blue-tooth dept.

Medicine 93

kkleiner writes to share a new device from Sonitus Medical that transmits sound to the inner ear via the teeth and jawbone. Dubbed "SoundBite," the device captures sound using a microphone in the ear and transmits to an in-the-mouth device that in turn sends the sounds through the jaw. "There are other hearing aid devices that utilize bone conduction. Most, however, use a titanium pin drilled into the jaw bone (or skull) to transmit sound to the cochlea. SoundBite seems to be the first non-surgical, non-invasive, easily removable device. While they are likely years from retail production, Sonitus Medical plans on having SoundBite ITMs fitted to each individual's upper back teeth and fabricated fairly quickly (1 to 2 weeks). A complete system is planned to include two ITMs, 1 BTE, and a charger. In the wider world of cochlear implants, SoundBite may only be fit for relatively specialized use. Still, the ability to easily upgrade or replace individual components makes the device competitive. A similar device could be adapted to provide audio for a personalized augmented reality system. Perhaps the Bluetooth headset of the future will involve actual teeth."

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12 Monkies (2, Informative)

ground.zero.612 (1563557) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987222)

Don't mind me, I only look crazy; I pulled my cochlear implant teeth out so they couldn't send me back to the apocalyptic future!

Re:12 Monkies (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987252)

Not 12 Monkeys, DUNE. "Remember the tooth!"

Re:12 Monkies (1)

ground.zero.612 (1563557) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987352)

While an excellent reference no doubt, the 12 Monkey's tooth was actually a transmitter/receiver.

Dr. Yueh's tooth implant was a poison gas tooth :)

Re:12 Monkies (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987400)

Well, a tracking device anyway. Its how they locate you to pull you back to the future.

Great film. And just think, the Sixth Sense wouldn't have happened without it.

Re:12 Monkies (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987306)

Oh. We were trying to tell you that we fixed it so it's not apocalyptic anymore, but you didn't hear us. We assumed your hearing aid had run out of batteries. I guess it wasn't the batteries...

Poor deaf people (3, Funny)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987268)

This will only make hearing the occasional biting criticism of one's peers harder for them.

Re:Poor deaf people (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987520)

But it might really be useful for those people getting a little long in the tooth.

Re:Poor deaf people (2, Funny)

suomynonAyletamitlU (1618513) | more than 4 years ago | (#30988960)

I'm sure they want to chew the fat just like everyone else.

Re:Poor deaf people (2, Interesting)

jjoelc (1589361) | more than 4 years ago | (#30989448)

What's that... I couldn't hear you over the crunching of the Doritos I'm eating...

No... really...

Re:Poor deaf people (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30990530)

I had to settle for +1 funny because there is no "+1 OWWW THE PAIN"

-by thePowerOfGrayskull

Wasn't there an episode of Gilligan's Island (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30987290)

that used this very premise?

Nothing New To See Hear (pun intended) (5, Funny)

a-zarkon! (1030790) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987298)

The government has had this technology for years. They use these dental implants to send auditory signals to the populace while people are asleep. It's all part of the one-world government conspiracy. Many of the so-called paranoid schizophrenics are really just people who don't tolerate the subconscious aural programming very well. Take a look outside your window for the black helicopter before you mod me down. I'm the guy leaning out the back with the parabolic microphone, waving at you.

Re:Nothing New To See Hear (pun intended) (2, Funny)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987440)

They use these dental implants to send auditory signals to the populace while people are asleep.

If you're wondering, they charge up the batteries with the fluoride they put in the water.

Re:Nothing New To See Hear (pun intended) (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987574)

They use these dental implants to send auditory signals to the populace while people are asleep.

If you're wondering, they charge up the batteries with the fluoride they put in the water.

Those bastards. Messing with my precious bodily fluids and whispering commie propaganda to me in my sleep.

Re:Nothing New To See Hear (pun intended) (1)

trapnest (1608791) | more than 4 years ago | (#30988154)

There is fluoride in the water. I wonder why...

Re:Nothing New To See Hear (pun intended) (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30988286)

It makes people passive.

No one suffers from fluoride deficiency in the countries where it is added to the water. The diet in those places is good enough that the people don't need additional fluoride.

Re:Nothing New To See Hear (pun intended) (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 4 years ago | (#30992270)

It makes people passive.

It's working, I find myself not really caring enough to bother googling it before I say you are full of it.

Re:Nothing New To See Hear (pun intended) (2, Funny)

severoon (536737) | more than 4 years ago | (#30988574)

Yea, I've heard they've even slipped nanobots into the water supply to reprogram our bra—DISREGARD. EVERYTHING IS FINE. NO MIND CONTROL HERE.

PAY MORE TAXES.

Re:Nothing New To See Hear (pun intended) (1)

ryzvonusef (1151717) | more than 4 years ago | (#30992960)

They reprogrammed your bra?? o.O

Re:Nothing New To See Hear (pun intended) (1)

eyendall (953949) | more than 4 years ago | (#30992590)

Not "commie propaganda", but "capitalist propaganda". It obviously works.

Re:Nothing New To See Hear (pun intended) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30996448)

THEY LIVE
WE SLEEP

stupid caps filter fodder

Dentures? (3, Funny)

jayemcee (605967) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987302)

Quite a lot of boomers who were way too close to the stacks at concerts may be happy about this in a few years, but here's hoping that it doesn't require real teeth since dentures may be a big part of the demographic.

Re:Dentures? (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987396)

I was hoping the same thing. Then I read TFA and no longer needed to hope:

There are other hearing aid devices that utilize bone conduction. Most, however, use a titanium pin drilled into the jaw bone (or skull) to transmit sound to the cochlea. SoundBite seems to be the first non-surgical, non-invasive, easily removable device.

Re:Dentures? (4, Informative)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987458)

I saw an item the other day that the warnings about listening to loud rock and roll were bogus; our (boomers') hearing is better than geezers who came before us. The reason is that loud rock music isn't nearly as loud as industrial machinery and firearms; our generation was the first to use hearing protection in the factory and shooting range.

I lost 10% of the hearing in my left ear in the USAF, when I found that out I realized why they had the rule that you always kept the aircraft to the left of the vehicle. It was so you'd only go deaf in one ear.

Some sounds are too loud even for hearing protection. Try sitting next to an MD3 (or was it a dash sixty? The one with an F-15 engine in it) while you wait for the guy to come out and change it. LOUD!

Re:Dentures? (1)

cayenne8 (626475) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987474)

I dunno...I was seeing this as being marketed to all the rappers and the like out there with the completely metal teeth (they call them grilles?).

I figured those were the antennae for the signals...

Yo!

Re:Dentures? (1)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987958)

A grill is a decorative dental appliances that wraps around your teeth. They are removable. Its slightly less retarded than replacing all your actual teeth with platinum and diamonds. Don't ask how I know that.

Re:Dentures? (2, Funny)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 4 years ago | (#30989674)

> A grill is a decorative dental appliances that wraps around your teeth.

So braces are now cool?

Re:Dentures? (2, Informative)

MBCook (132727) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987616)

I would imagine that while simple vacuum seal dentures (the kind that people end up using SeaBond for) it wouldn't work too well. But if you have the kind that lock onto metal attached to your jaw, it should work perfectly.

Ouch! (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987320)

My mouth hurts just thinking about it. What if I am listing to a TV program about dentistry? Am I supposed to enjoy the sound of the drill?

Wheeeeeeeeeee Grind Grind....

Re:Ouch! (5, Insightful)

mcspoo (933106) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987380)

As a deaf person, I can tell you that the sound of a drill in my tooth is one of the few sounds I can hear exactly as well as you can, so this is probably a pretty decent idea.

Re:Ouch! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30987488)

Reading that draws out the worry in me. I was thinking something along the lines of "What about those sounds that I can hear that are so loud/whatever that I can feel them in my teeth? How would that work out in the case of this hearing augmentation device?"

Re:Ouch! (1)

fuego451 (958976) | more than 4 years ago | (#30988764)

So, your 'nerve' hearing is okay? In the everyday world without my hearing aids I am basically deaf but if I rub the skin anywhere around my ear, I hear it just fine. My hearing problem is outer ear mechanical blockages caused by a severe case of swimmers ear and bone growing behind the tympanic membrane but my nerve hearing is great. My $10k aids are just an inexpensive, non-invasive way to help me hear a little better and I would imagine the amplified sound resonating in the surrounding bone is a big part of the improved hearing.

Re:Ouch! (1)

mcspoo (933106) | more than 4 years ago | (#30990152)

No, I'm almost completely nerve deaf, but drilling ones tooth is VERY LOUD for some reason. I wouldn't want this done, simply because it doesn't seem logical to carry electrical components (the amplifier) in my mouth.

Re:Ouch! (1)

radtea (464814) | more than 4 years ago | (#30991734)

I wouldn't want this done, simply because it doesn't seem logical to carry electrical components (the amplifier) in my mouth.

Logical? What do you mean? Would it violate some sylogism or Bayesian rule?

Since the signal is conducted through the teeth, and the amplifier is what drives the teeth, and the teeth are in the mouth, it would not be "logical" to put the amplifier outside the mouth. Nor would it be physical or electrical.

As someone with progressive congenital deafness this looks damned interesting, and I really can't think of anything more logical than avoiding having a permanent wire stuck up my cochlea in favour of some easily removable and servicable electronics that, amongst other things, wouldn't make it practically impossible to have an MRI.

Re:Ouch! (2, Insightful)

value_added (719364) | more than 4 years ago | (#30989608)

As a deaf person, I can tell you that the sound of a drill in my tooth is one of the few sounds I can hear exactly as well as you can, so this is probably a pretty decent idea.

No doubt you experience or otherwise sense something that's noticeable to you, but I doubt it's the same. Once upon a time I spent a period of about 2 years getting dental work done. Everything from ordinary fillings and cleanings, to root canals and surgery. Sounds like a bad horror movie? Not at all. My dentist ran a small office in Beverly Hills and offered, provided, or otherwise insisted on the following:

1. As soon as you sit down, you're asked to pick your favourite music (if you haven't brought any with you), and you get handed a full-sized set of head phones.

2. A few minutes later (during which you hope the attractive assistant accidentally rubs herself against your arm more than once), a small rubber attachment is placed on your nose, and the gas is turned on, and left on.

3. Later still (if you're there for anything but a simple cleaning), you get a topical application of novocaine. You don't care, and barely notice when a few minutes pass and a few injections directly to your gums are made.

Now you've been sitting in that chair about 20 minutes. You sensory inputs have been muted one by one and you're enjoying a high. At this point, there's no way anyone in that chair will notice, sense, or care about anything but the groove of the music coming out of the head phones. Am I exaggerating? Let's put it this way -- by the end of the 3rd or 4th appointment, I was looking forward to my visits, and hoped each one would last a long time.

If you hear, smell, see, or otherwise feel anything, I'd suggest a different dentist.

Re:Ouch! (1)

mcspoo (933106) | more than 4 years ago | (#30990158)

Mod +1 insightful and hilarious :)

And stop playing with yourself (4, Funny)

suso (153703) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987378)

Kent! This is God!

Re:And stop playing with yourself (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30987748)

Kent, this is Jesus.

...

Stop playing with yourself.

Kent: It is you!

Re:And stop playing with yourself (1)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 4 years ago | (#30988032)

Thta activtyi maks yuo go blidn, not daef .
   

Re:And stop playing with yourself (1)

kehren77 (814078) | more than 4 years ago | (#30988130)

I love this movie. Time to see if it's on Netflix streaming.

Re:And stop playing with yourself (1)

Belial6 (794905) | more than 4 years ago | (#30988200)

Yes, Real Genius [netflix.com] is streamable from Netflix. Now, lets see what happens when it becomes the single most watched movie of the day. Someone at Netflix is going to be really confused.

Re:And stop playing with yourself (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 4 years ago | (#30989164)

Moses, this is the Lord thy God commanding you to obey my law. Do you hear me?

Yes. I hear you! I hear you! A deaf man could hear you..

What's next? (1)

cormander (1273812) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987398)

A hearing aid in our mouth. What's next? An optical implant in our nose?

Re:What's next? (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987456)

No, an intra-aural speech synthesizer for the mute is what logically follows.

Re:What's next? (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987502)

If it worked, yes, that would be coming soon.

For the record, this isn't exactly a "hearing aid in the mouth." The reciever seems to go on your ear, it just wirelessly transmits to an emitter on your teeth, presumably because putting a microphone in your mouth would pick up you talking and not much else, and keeping your mouth open anytime you wanted to hear something would get annoying.

Old News (1)

multipartmixed (163409) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987420)

Didn't this happen on to Gilligan in 1965?

Re:Old News (1)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 4 years ago | (#30988006)

Didn't this happen [to] Gilligan...?

I wouldn't remember, I was too busy drooling over Maryann's shorts.
   

Prior Art: Beethoven (2, Interesting)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987450)

Didn't Beethoven hook a wire between his teeth and clavichord (small piano-like instrument) to aid in composing his music when is ears were failing?

Re:Prior Art: Beethoven (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30987882)

Or Tooth Tunes. [wikipedia.org]

Re:Prior Art: Beethoven (1)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987978)

Slight corrections: Wikipedia says it was some kind of rod hooked to a piano, not a wire to a clavichord. However, he may have done similar things to both instruments and the citation merely mentioned one. Although pianos are louder, the distance between a player's mouth and the sounding area may also be greater, diminishing the volume advantage, but this is only speculation on my part. (The citation source is fee-based.)

Re:Prior Art: Beethoven (1)

Scarbo27 (1150965) | more than 4 years ago | (#30992170)

My understanding is that Beethoven held a ruler (or equivalent) between his teeth and rested it on the piano so he could hear it. And it would most likely have been a piano rather than a clavichord, which even in Beethoven's day was considered an old-fashioned instrument. Cristofori invented the piano in about 1707, and the other keyboard instruments (harpsichord, clavichord, virginal, essentially everything except organ) fell out of favor after the advantages of the piano became obvious.

Re:Prior Art: Beethoven (1)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 4 years ago | (#30992358)

And it would most likely have been a piano rather than a clavichord, which even in Beethoven's day was considered an old-fashioned instrument.

I've seen a fair amount of evidence that he used them sometimes. There's some evidence that he enjoyed the control that clavichords allow, such as vibrato, something hard to produce on a piano. True, they were fading in popularity in his time, but did so slowly. It's roughly comparable to acoustic guitars now. They are still used as a kind of personal, intimate instrument, but generally not for heavy-duty performances.
   

What on earth took so long? (2, Interesting)

bistromath007 (1253428) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987454)

I remember buying a fifty cent lollipop that was made in Mexico that had a metal stick in the middle that let you hear music when you bit it. This happened about a month or so after first reading about this technology in a magazine I had ten years ago. Why are they just now coming to market with this for serious applications?

Re:What on earth took so long? (1)

JimboG (1467977) | more than 4 years ago | (#30989462)

Bone conduction devices have been around for a lot longer than that. They are primarily used for kids that are too young for hearing aids, or for people that can't use amplification aids due to middle ear issues. They have a headband like the old cheap 80's style walkman headphones with the vibrating unit resting on the bony part just behind your ear. What’s new here is that this device sounds like (heheh) it'll be a whole lot more discrete.

Re:What on earth took so long? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30992548)

You are kidding us. Fifty cent didn't make music 10 years ago. It was probably a Snoop Dogg lollipop.

Re:What on earth took so long? (1)

bistromath007 (1253428) | more than 4 years ago | (#31000666)

I would've remembered that, since it probably would've just said "put it in yo mowf, bitches" instead of playing music.

The other way around... (1)

Rick Richardson (87058) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987524)

"Dubbed "SoundBite," the device captures sound using a microphone in the ear and transmits to an in-the-mouth device that in turn sends the sounds through the jaw."

The other way around!!!

Wayback Tech (2, Informative)

DynaSoar (714234) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987536)

I saw/heard an external bone conduction device with no spill over into the air, at the Lake County, Indiana fair around 1962 give or take a couple years. It was shaped like a small, rectangular pencil sharpener cut in half so that a half-cone was cut out of one side. That hollow was placed on the bridge of the nose. The fidelity was superb for the time. The drawback was, no stereo, hence no or very poor localization. I've watched for the commercial version ever since, but have never seen one.

Re:Wayback Tech (1)

LyingDown (836007) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987906)

I have the Baha device mentioned in the OP -- the titanium screw in my skull. It works great. It involved surgery, and that makes it expensive. But it also ensures excellent sound conduction. My left ear is good, so this device is mounted behind my right ear. It allows me to hear sounds from the right side.

These devices are aimed at two categories of people:
- Inner ear works, middle ear does not: it gets the sound (vibration) to the inner ear
- Single sided deafness: it gets the sound from the deaf side across to the working ear

Hearing aids worn in the ear cause some problems with the ear itself. I would imagine having a device in your mouth would also create some issues: it doesn't look like it would permit eating, and might even interfere with speech. So I would see this dental appliance as a bridge, an interim solution for something like the Baha, or a lower cost alternative.

Bone conduction hearing aid. (1)

antdude (79039) | more than 4 years ago | (#30988448)

I wear one of these types [treachercollins.org] (hasn't changed for over a decade since Oticon [oticon.com] went digital years ago to improve and requires implants which I refused). These hearing aid were always mono (not stereo). I can't hear directional and can only hear a few channels. :(

Reminds me of that old urban legend (1)

Kitkoan (1719118) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987632)

Of the one where someone late at night while trying to sleep swears they hear voices, and can't ever get rid of these voices no matter how many times they move houses only to have the dentist find some metal in their teeth (or a fake metal tooth) that was picking up radio waves and thats what they were really hearing. Life imitating art?

Re:Reminds me of that old urban legend (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987808)

It might actually be possible. Each tooth has a nerve. The sodium channels in those nerves are sensitive to a few millivolts. They include mechanisms which effectively amplify signals and convert them to bistable, digital streams. It wouldn't surprise me if a tooth could act as a self powered radio receiver, in conjunction with the rest of the body.

Edison did it first (1)

Jeff1946 (944062) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987664)

I remember reading when Edison was working on the phonograph he would bite the speaker (actually it was more like a megaphone) to hear it better as he was partially deaf. I believe he lost his hearing from being smacked around on his head by his boss when he was a child.

Re:Edison did it first (1)

manicb (1633645) | more than 4 years ago | (#31000700)

Awesome. That makes this pretty much as old as recorded sound; and I'm sure somebody found it with a tuning fork long before that.

re:steel pin (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30987682)

just use a miniature version of the neurophone, dermal contact only, no surgery required

Secret signals (1)

DaFallus (805248) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987684)

The CIA cafeteria menu for the week of May 15th is as follows: Monday: shepherd's pie. Tuesday:...

Alarm Clock (2, Interesting)

pavon (30274) | more than 4 years ago | (#30987942)

Assuming it could attach well enough that swallowing/choking wouldn't be a concern, this would be very nice to use an alarm clock that wouldn't wake up other people in the same bed / dorm room / apartment.

Re:Alarm Clock (1)

Uzuri (906298) | more than 4 years ago | (#31025220)

If I had to guess, you'd probably be looking at something much like a retainer or the mouth-guards people use to keep from grinding their teeth -- probably quite difficult to swallow :)

Didn't 007 use some thing like this at one time to (1)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 4 years ago | (#30988074)

Didn't 007 use some thing like this at one time to do some spy work in ..........

Inevitable instructions... (1)

fahrbot-bot (874524) | more than 4 years ago | (#30988186)

A complete system is planned to include two ITMs, 1 BTE, and a charger.

... "Remove from mouth before charging."

Bluetooth? (0, Troll)

Rix (54095) | more than 4 years ago | (#30988290)

But if we replace those headsets with this, how will we recognize douchebags at a glance?

Re:Bluetooth? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30993964)

well, how about you guys just put a sticker on your head that says "I'm a douchebag"?

oblig. Gibson quote (1)

Kargan (250092) | more than 4 years ago | (#30988406)

"When Hiro hit the switch, I was dreaming of Paris, dreaming of wet, dark streets in winter. The pain came oscillating up from the floor of my skull, exploding behind my eyes in a wall of blue neon; I jackknifed up out of the mesh hammock, screaming. I always scream; I make a point of it. Feedback raged in my skull. The pain switch is an auxiliary circuit in the bonephone implant, patched directly into the pain centers, just the thing for cutting through a surrogate's barbiturate fog. It took a few seconds for my life to fall together, icebergs of biography looming through the fog: who I was, where I was, what I was doing there, who was waking me. Hiro's voice came crackling into my head through the bone-conduction implant. 'Damn, Toby. Know what it does to my ears, you scream like that?'"

Oh you don't watch I love Lucy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30988438)

Lucy [snopes.com] beat these guys to it!

Not what's needed (1)

thethibs (882667) | more than 4 years ago | (#30988498)

It would be a lot more impressive if they'd invent a hearing aid that doesn't need an expensive custom-fitting that has to be repeated every few years.

This has been done, by Phonak (1)

Kupfernigk (1190345) | more than 4 years ago | (#30993324)

I have a new Phonak - it has no mould but a soft silicone guide for the in-ear speaker which is cheaply replaceable. The guides come in a few standard sizes. The main problem with it is, quite literally, not knowing if it is there or not. It makes me wonder why bluetooth headsets are so big and heavy.

Blue... tooth? (1)

ivoras (455934) | more than 4 years ago | (#30988702)

Would be great if the equipment came in blue color :)

Re: YouTooth Device (1)

tekrat (242117) | more than 4 years ago | (#30988828)

Nuff said... (quick, trademark that!).

You can't handle the tooth! (1)

sehlat (180760) | more than 4 years ago | (#30988888)

Obligatory reply.

Re:The Tooth (1)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | more than 4 years ago | (#30991990)

The Tooth shall set you free. Tell others about the Tooth, the whole Tooth, and nothing but the Tooth.

a bite ? (1)

Conditioner (1405031) | more than 4 years ago | (#30989144)

How much data is transmitted, with one bite of sound ?

The mouth isn't the greatest place... (1)

Silh (70926) | more than 4 years ago | (#30989152)

Disclaimer: I am a dentist...

Is this such a good idea? The mouth is a rather harsh environment... moist, corrosive environment; very very abundant in bacteria (which just love to grow onto anything foreign we place in there); and subject to some very strong forces (hundred or two pounds of pressure of conscious biting force, can be many times more unconscious [eg. sleeping]).

Less invasive I suppose, but it'll have its own issues.

Re:The mouth isn't the greatest place... (1)

srothroc (733160) | more than 4 years ago | (#30989350)

I imagine that, like normal hearing aids and cochlear implant processors, it wouldn't be worn when sleeping. From the looks of it, you'd clean it or soak it in cleaning solution while you sleep, then put it back in when you wake up.

It's too bad, though; this isn't a solution for people who have to go to the cochlear implant, in a lot of cases; it just provides a better path for sound to get to the cochlea, whereas the cochlear implant replaces the cochlea (generally because it's not working properly in some way or another). I'm always hoping for something better, and smaller.

i wear dentures (1)

FudRucker (866063) | more than 4 years ago | (#30989356)

i don't have any real teeth you insensitive clod!

I think I am already hearing the informercials... (1)

garompeta (1068578) | more than 4 years ago | (#30989892)

Who needs Bluetooth anyway... GET the revolutionary BLUETEETH!
Call now and get two BLUETEETH at the price of a tooth!
Call now! now, nooooooow!

AM Radio (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30989990)

When I was 9yrs old, 40 yrs ago, I spent a week in hospital after a traffic accident. Through that week I could hear a local (St.Louis, MO) AM radio station by holding two teeth together. On/off. Must have created a contact diode and had enough fillings.

Brilliant (1)

dynamo (6127) | more than 4 years ago | (#30990196)

Of course! Put the microphone in your ear, and the speaker in your mouth.

It is not the first... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30991306)

"SoundBite seems to be the first non-surgical, non-invasive, easily removable device." This is not correct. My wife is deaf on one side and uses a TransEar (http://www.transear.com) hearing aid. It uses bone conduction to transfer sound from the deaf side to the hearing side. The deaf side is custom fitted to the ear canal so that it makes good contact to the skull; it's nonsurgical. Incidentally, she says the fidelity is not great but it is an improvement over having no auditory input at all from that side, especially in noisy environments.

Not quite *original*... (1)

PSandusky (740962) | more than 4 years ago | (#30991796)

Maybe this is a way for people to get in touch with their inner dolphins... Heh. There's something for the furry crowd.

Dolphins have been said to receive sound through their jawbones -- albeit their lower jaws, which thin out to supposedly vibratory "panbones" -- for quite some time now. (It's not hard to find a source for this -- a lot of books (even through something like National Geographic) that talk about dolphin anatomy have a figure about echolocation, for which the jaw receiver system is thought to work.)

Old ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30991914)

Toothbrushes: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tooth_Tunes

Why am I... (1)

zerospeaks (1467571) | more than 4 years ago | (#30991918)

Why am I thinking of Real Genius? "Stop playing with yourself!"

What a godsend... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30992344)

What a godsend for those facing oral exams! .. For once, "wisdom teeth" can live up to their name...

I've used this tech (1)

stewbacca (1033764) | more than 4 years ago | (#30997072)

I've used this tech in my military days and there was one problem I had with it. You have to plug your ears and close off the external pressure for it to work, otherwise you can't hear the jawbone mic (think of it like when you plug your ears and talk how loudly you can hear yourself). Not sure deaf people would have this problem though, if their ears don't work in the first place.

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