เครื่องช่วยฟัง Augmented Reality ของ Facebook สามารถโฟกัสไปที่เสียงที่คุณกำลัง 'มอง'

I’m sure you’ve been to a bar or club and realized how hard it is to strike up a conversation with someone when the music is blasting into your ears, and if you know that pain, imagine what’s it like for people who have hearing problems.

Now imagine you’re crunching away at work alongside noisy colleagues. I know that feeling which is why I bought noise-cancelling headphones. But again, it’s not a solution for people with hearing problems.

Facebook, on the other hand, might have a solution. They are using Augmented Reality (AR) to focus on sounds you’re ‘looking at.’

Research lead for Facebook’s Hearing Science lab told Digital Trends, ”Many people with hearing loss don’t use hearing aids — in part — because they don’t work well in everyday situations like a noisy restaurant, a conversation involving multiple people at a loud party, or in a moving car.”

The team is exploring how they can use beamforming technology, deep learning, noise cancellation, and AR to fix this problem.

You might be thinking, AR is a very visual-focused technology, so how does that help with hearing?

The reason: The team is using AR glasses to know which sounds you want to focus on. The technology will then amplify that sound while drowning out the rest.

It works firstly on the AR side of things. The technology can map out the objects – or in this case a person you’re talking to. Once it understands what it needs to focus on, the rest of the system comes into play by picking up only sounds coming from the ‘object’ and amplifying it while drowning out noises from objects, not in the field of focus.

The team also said that this technology could also work with phone calls, where the person on the other end will only hear your voice and the rest of the ambient sounds will be cancelled out.

Lunner and his team also published a study on how by harnessing the power of AR can enhance hearing aids.

It’s a pretty neat piece of tech that could greatly help those with hearing problems, and once the COVID-19 virus is irradiated. It could help you have a conversation at a bar or club without having a sore throat the next day.

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