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A Phonak for Every Child: Complete Product Portfolio for all Ages and Degrees of Hearing Loss

Greatest choice of Phonak models to support children in realizing their full potential

Stäfa, Switzerland, April 1st 2009 - Phonak offers a complete junior product portfolio that enables children of all ages and with all degrees of hearing loss to realize their full potential and to prepare for a successful future. The junior hearing instruments are designed to meet the needs and lifestyle of children: they sit snugly behind young ears and are built to be safe, durable and simple to operate. With Nios micro, Phonak presents its most comprehensive and technologically advanced pediatric solution for children with mild to moderately-severe hearing loss. The junior product family includes state-of-the-art technologies such as SoundRecover, WhistleBlock, Dynamic FM, CableFree fitting and iPFG Junior fitting mode adapted to the specific needs of children.

Children, regardless of the degree of their hearing loss, do not get sufficient access to high frequency information when amplified conventionally. SoundRecover, a non-linear frequency compression algorithm developed by Phonak, enables children with a hearing loss to ideally understand speech and sounds that make up their world, such as other children's or women's high voices. „A clear understanding is crucial for the full development of speech and language that build an important basis for future life and social integration," explains Valentin Chapero, CEO of Phonak, the relevance of innovative hearing technology in the process of growing up. „We are proud to be able today to make a contribution to maximum quality of life for children and to support them in their start into a successful life."

More hearing and full potential achievement for children with Nios micro

Nios micro BTE is designed to accompany children with mild to moderately-severe hearing loss through the different stages of growing up, from baby to teenager to young adult, and to easily adapt to the individual needs at every stage. Innovative features based on the Phonak CORE technology guarantee for more hearing and clear understanding at every age and in every surrounding. SoundRecover improves audibility of the most important high frequency sounds such as "s" and "sh". WhistleBlock Management and Real Ear Sound allow for a natural sound experience without feedback problems or other background noise. Nios micro is also designed to allow for uncomplicated access to the world of modern wireless communication. iCom connects the Nios micro with communication and entertainment systems such as mobile phones, MP3 players, computers and TV systems. The design- integrated Dynamic FM receiver ML12i ideally supports children's active life style and allows for ideal understanding in loud surroundings such as classrooms.

In addition, Nios micro offers innovative security features for maximum confidence. A tamperproof battery door limits access to batteries for young children; iView enables parents to check on the status of the hearing system at every moment: At the push of a single button, the colour LCD display loads information on battery status, current program settings and the volume levels of up to two hearing systems.

Nios micro will be commercially available in two price categories in April 2009.

Ideal support for all ages and degrees of hearing loss with Naída Junior and Audéo Yes

With its digital technology and innovative features, Naída Junior empowers children with moderately- severe to profound hearing losses in a life-changing manner. The small, esthetically appealing Naída hearing instruments offer exceptional audibility and clarity. The freedom of wireless connectivity allows for easy access to the modern communication world, which is especially important in the active lifestyle of children. The water-resistant, robust design guarantees for dependability.

Audéo YES answers the challenges of the teenage years, when self-image becomes a primary concern. With its award-winning modern design and appealing colors, Audéo YES is discreet and satisfies all esthetic needs of teenagers. In addition, the CORE platform integrates state-of-the art technologies such as SoundRecover and WhistleBlock into the world's smallest hearing system with full wireless functionality.

Child-friendly fitting with CableFree Fitting and iPFG Junior Fitting Mode

iCube applies the wireless capabilities of the CORE platform to facilitate the transfer of fitting data from the PC, directly into the hearing instruments - for a fast and reliable CableFree fitting that creates a more relaxed fitting environment for young children. It allows professionals to continue programming even if the child is moving around, at a distance of up to 30 feet (10 meters).

With the Junior Fitting Mode, Phonak offers a one-click pediatric configuration. It was developed based on input from the international pediatric community and the Phonak Pediatric Advisory Board, and considers the fact that a fitting can require - depending on the age of the child - a different work flow and hearing system configuration. The Junior Fitting Mode has been completed, iPFG 2.4 onwards, to include older children's (9-18 years) needs with defaults specific to this age group.

New Dynamic FM Solutions for optimized understanding in difficult situations

When it comes to understanding speech in noise or from a distance, nothing beats the performance of an FM system. The latest Phonak FM solutions, with the option of a design-integrated or universal receiver solution, not only help children to hear more but also to further enhance their speech and language development. Dynamic FM, the global standard in FM technology, delivers exceptional performance at home, in daycare or classroom situations, from kindergarten right through to college. With DynaMic, Phonak introduces a child-proof Dynamic FM passaround microphone for classrooms that use the inspiro Dynamic FM transmitter and the MultiTalker Network (MTN). DynaMic further expands the functionality of inspiro and the MultiTalker Network by allowing FM receiver wearers to hear and understand any of up to 10 speakers that pick up the microphone - the result being that everyone in the class can be heard perfectly, by everyone. In this way, no child is left out of the conversation in the classroom. Phonak's Dynamic FM products are compatible with virtually all BTE products from other manufacturers, with cochlear implants and Baha's.

Reinvigorating APD diagnostics with LiSN-S - ‘Listening in Spatialized Noise - Sentences Test'

Developed by Australia's renowned National Acoustic Laboratories (NAL) and to be distributed exclusively by Phonak, LiSN-S will be the first publicly available tool of its kind. The test uses sentences of speech - rather than individual words - to identify the problems children can face using the spatial information in sound. Offered as a combined hardware and software package, it enables professionals to simulate different speech environments, with target and distracter voices competing for the child's attention. By asking a child to repeat the sentences spoken by the target voice, the audiologist is able to accurately assess the child's ability to identify target speech in challenging situations such as in a classroom. LiSN-S is not only accurate but the test is also quick and easy to administer; in just 20 minutes, audiologists are provided with clear results in easy-to-print document format.

DynaMic will be commercially available in mid-June and LiSN-S in mid-May 2009.

About Phonak

Headquartered near Zurich, Switzerland, Phonak, a member of the Sonova Group, has developed, produced and globally distributed state-of-the-art hearing systems and wireless devices for more than 50 years. The combination of expertise in hearing technology, mastery in acoustics and strong cooperation with hearing care professionals allows Phonak to significantly improve people's hearing ability and speech understanding and therefore their quality of life.

Phonak offers a complete range of digital hearing instruments, along with complementary wireless communication systems. With a worldwide presence, Phonak drives innovation and sets new industry benchmarks regarding miniaturization and performance.

For more information on the Junior product portfolio, please visit www.phonak-us.com.

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