Starkey Hearing Aids
Models, Features, Prices, and Reviews
Updated 02 September 2020
Starkey hearing aids are the flagship brand of Starkey Hearing Technologies, one of the world's top hearing aid manufacturers. Headquartered in Eden Prairie, Minnesota, Starkey is the only US company among the "Big Five," a group of companies that collectively control more than 80 percent of the global market for hearing aids.
William F. Austin founded Starkey Hearing in 1967, initially as a retail shop and repair service for hearing aids. The company soon began building its own hearing aids and gradually expanded sales worldwide. In the past decade, Starkey has invested heavily in research and development, delivering innovations in sound processing, wireless technologies, and miniaturization. Today, Starkey Hearing has more than 5,000 employees and operates in more than 100 countries.
2017: Starkey Halo iQ
2016: Starkey SoundLens Synergy, Starkey Muse, Starkey Halo 2
2015: Starkey Z Series
2014: Starkey Halo
2013: Starkey 3 Series
2011: Starkey Xino
Starkey hearing aid technologies
Starkey makes premium hearing aids for all levels of hearing loss, programmed by an audiologist or other hearing health professional based on the results of your hearing test. In recent years, the company has established a position as a leading developer of emerging hearing aid technologies.
- It was among the first to advance miniaturization technology to deliver "invisible hearing aids" that sit deep within the ear canal.
- Starkey was also an early entrant in the Made-for-iPhone hearing aid market with its Halo and Livio hearing aids.
- Starkey’s IQ sound processing system makes it easier for hearing-aid wearers to understand speech in noisy environments.
- In 2018, Starkey introduced what it called the "first hearing aid with integrated sensors and artificial intelligence”; for example, a sensor-based fall-detection feature in the Starkey Livio AI hearing aid alerts medical responders if the you take a spill.
- In February 2020, Starkey began selling their integrated sensor technology in a custom-fitted in-the-ear form factor, and launched Livio Edge AI. They also launched a table microphone for improved hearing in groups.
- In August 2020, Starkey added a new rechargeable behind-the-ear Livio hearing aid, launched live teleaudiology support, and added the IntelliVoice feature to their flagship Livio Edge AI hearing aids.
In addition to iPhone compatibility, Starkey added native audio streaming for select Android smartphones in early 2020.
Starkey hearing aid prices
Starkey hearing aids range in price from $1,368 to $4,510 per device, depending on the model. Popular models include the Halo iQ and Livio.
|Model||Average Price||Average Deal Price|
|Starkey Livio AI||$4,510||$3,734|
|Starkey Livio 2400||$4,058||$2,956|
|Starkey Livio 2000||$3,297||$2,403|
|Starkey Livio 1600||$3,292||$2,137|
|Starkey Livio 1200||$2,523||$1,697|
|Starkey Livio 1000||$1,580||$1,368|
|Starkey Halo iQ i2400||$3,525||$2,965|
|Starkey Halo iQ i2000||$3,376||$2,746|
|Starkey Halo iQ i1600||$2,463||$2,382|
Consumers save an average of $823 per device on Starkey hearing aids when using Hearing Tracker’s deal finder. Average retail prices are calculated based on data from Hearing Tracker’s advertising platform.
Starkey hearing aid models
Starkey provides a broad line of hearing aids for all forms of hearing loss. Multiple levels of technology and features accommodate users' individual needs. Its model styles include custom invisible in-the-ear (ITE) and receiver-in-the-canal (RIC) hearing aids as well as powerful behind-the-ear (BTE) solutions.
Livio Edge AI hearing aids
Livio is Starkey’s current flagship product family, and the successor to Starkey's Halo iQ family of hearing aids. Livio is available in multiple behind-the-ear and in-the-ear form factors. The full-featured Livio Edge AI features direct audio streaming (iOS and Android), sensor-based accelerometers, and artificial-intelligence software that can detect falls and monitor real-time health information. Livio AI made the list on Dr Cliff’s top hearing aids of 2020.
Livio vs Livio AI vs Livio Edge AI
Livio is available in multiple technology levels (named “1000”, “1200”, “1600”, “2000”, and “2400”) with “1000” being the lowest technology (cheapest) and “2400” being the highest technology (most expensive). Starkey also offers an optional “AI” feature upgrade for each of those technology levels, yielding products like the “Livio 1000 AI” or “Livio 2000 AI”. At the very top level, the AI feature upgrade is referred to as “Edge AI”, so the absolute highest technology level available is the “Livio 2400 Edge AI”.
Confused yet? We were too! To help clear things up, we’ve created the following table, inspired by the work of Nathan Darby at Chenal Hearing in Little Rock, AR.
|2400 + Edge Al||2000 + Al||1600 + Al||1200 + Al||1000 + Al|
|Custom - In the Ear||✓||✓||✓||✓||✓|
|Thrive Care App||✓|
|Find My Phone||✓||✓||✓|
|Multiflex Tinnitus Pro||✓|
|Live Sessions (Telehealth Synchronous)||✓||✓||✓||✓||✓|
|Remote Adjustments (Asynchronous)||✓||✓||✓||✓||✓|
* IntelliVoice is available with iOS only
** Reminders may be added via in-app purchase $4.99/m
Exclusive AI features
The following features are only available by purchasing* the AI feature upgrade. So if you’re interested in any of these features be sure to inquire about AI:
Available in “Edge AI” only:
- Fall detection - Detects when you fall and sends an alert message to selected contacts.
- Edge Mode - Conducts an AI-based analysis of the environment and makes smart and immediate adjustments.
- Translate - Communicate with people who speak other languages via a translation tool in the Thrive app.
- IntelliVoice - AI-enabled IntelliVoice feature helps improve speech understanding for those with significant hearing loss.
- Thrive Care App - The Thrive Care app lets hearing aid wearers share information like physical activity, hearing aid usage, social engagement and more, with pre-selected people.
- MultiFlex Tinnitus Pro - Creates a comforting and customizable sound stimulus that you and your hearing professional can fine-tune to soothe the unique, irritating sounds you hear.
Other AI-only features:
- Find My Phone - Using your hearing aids and Thrive Assistant, you can now locate your lost or misplaced phone by having it ring.
- Transcribe - Conversations are transcribed into text that can be saved or shared.
- Body tracking - Tracks your daily steps, measures movement and monitors more vigorous physical activity.
- Brain tracking - Monitors the brain-health benefits of wearing hearing aids by tracking active listening.
- Tap controls - Enables you to easily stop or start audio streaming by simply tapping your ear twice.
- Voice commands - You can use voice commands and ask questions related to the Thrive Hearing app to control your hearing aids or set reminders.
Feature descriptions courtesy Starkey.
* Most clinics charge more for the AI upgrade, but some may offer the upgrade at no cost.
In February, Starkey launched the new Livio Custom, a custom-fitted in-the-ear version of the Livio AI. The Custom is rechargeable, and includes the same embedded sensors as the behind-the-ear model. Metal charging contacts, a push button, and microphone ports are seen on the exterior faceplate of the Custom. Edge mode is also available via a double-tap.
Livio App Control
The Thrive Hearing Control smartphone app works with Livio AI to perform wellness tracking, activity tracking, brain health tracking, and language translation functions. All versions of Livio have access to a hearing aid finder function, iOS audio streaming for phone calls and multimedia audio, hearing-aid remote control, personalized listening programs, geo-tagged listening programs, audio notifications, an adaptive car mode, and accessories for wireless audio streaming from Bluetooth devices.
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Starkey Halo hearing aids — Starkey’s previous flagship Made For iPhone product family — feature advanced sound processing, noise reduction, and directional microphones for better understanding of speech in challenging listening environments. The Made-for-iPhone functionality provides wireless streaming of audio and phone calls from iOS devices, and Starkey TruLink 2.4 GHz wireless enables (with accessory purchase) wireless audio streaming from Android phones and external microphones. And geotagged GPS memories in your smartphone tell your hearing aids to automatically switch program modes when they detect you are in tagged locations such as "home," or "work."
Muse and Muse IQ
Starkey Muse and Muse IQ hearing aids come in multiple styles including in-the-canal (ITC), receiver-in-the-canal (RIC), and behind-the-ear (BTE). The family provides advanced sound processing and includes a rechargeable RIC solution that enables all-day hearing on an overnight charge. The Muse hearing aids are also compatible with Starkey's 2.4 GHz streaming accessories that provide wireless connectivity with external microphones and the TV.
SoundLens Synergy and Picasso invisible hearing aids
Starkey SoundLens Synergy and Picasso hearing aids are invisible in-the-canal (IIC) hearing aids that use size 10 hearing aid batteries. They are also compatible with Starkey's 2.4 GHz streaming accessories that provide wireless connectivity with external microphones and the TV. And feedback cancellation prevents annoying whistling.
Starkey Z Series hearing aids come in form factors ranging from behind-the-ear (BTE), to receiver-in-the-canal (RIC), to in-the-ear (ITE) and completely-in-the-canal (CIC). They help new hearing-aid wearers adjust to new sounds gradually by automatically adjusting them over time. They feature frequency shifting to replicate high-frequency sounds at lower frequencies that can be heard more easily. And they provide a full range of connectivity options utilizing Starkey's 2.4 GHz streaming accessories.
Starkey legacy hearing aid models
Starkey continues to support earlier hearing-aid models based on previous generations of its sound-processing technology. Because these models still provide high-performance functionality, some audiologist may still sell them at lower price points than the latest models. The Starkey Xino RIC 10 is a receiver in-the ear hearing aid that has a telecoil and uses size 10 hearing aid batteries. The Starkey 3 Series is a family of hearing aids that comes in multiple form factors and with five technology levels.
Starkey hearing aid apps and accessories
Starkey provides a number of accessories that improve hearing aid performance in challenging listening environments, while watching TV, when on the phone, and in numerous other ways. To learn which accessories work with the hearing aids you wear, consult with your hearing healthcare provider.
Thrive remote care app
The Thrive App works with Livio AI hearing aids to make phone calls and control program settings on the hearing aids. The Thrive app also lets you view and manage the health information that Livio AI monitors and stores for you, providing daily feedback from your Thrive Wellness Score.
Smartphone app that works with Livio AI hearing aids lets you make phone calls, control program settings, and view and manage health information collected by the hearing aids.
Compatible hearing aids
The Thrive app also activates the AI capabilities in the hearing aids. Among other things, it manages fall detection and alerts, enables voice-to-text transcription, automatically monitors hearing aid performance, translates words from 27 languages into English, allows the hearing care provider to make remote adjustments, and controls accessories.
Remote Microphone +
Remote Microphone + streams audio from a variety of sources to Livio AI and Livio hearing aids. Among other things, it lets you use your hearing aids to connect directly to Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant.
And the Mini Remote Microphone can be clipped to the clothing and makes it easy to hear a conversation partner from across the room.
In February, 2020, Starkey introduced the Table Microphone, which is designed “for group settings like meetings, family gatherings or noisy restaurant environments.”
The Table Microphone is placed on a table to improve hearing for speech in a group setting. It contains 8 built-in microphones and transmits sound via a 2.4Ghz wireless connection.
TV audio streamer
When plugged into either analog or digital outputs on the TV or other audio source, the streamer transmits audio directly to your Livio and Livio AI hearing aids.
Trulink remote controller and app
With the TruLink 2.4 GHz wireless platform, you can use your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and Apple Watch to stream audio to your Starkey’s Halo iQ hearing aids. You can also control volume and program settings.
If you prefer a handheld accessory, Starkey also offers TruLink Remote to adjust your Halo iQ hearing aids. Small enough to fit into your shirt pocket, it lets you control memory and volume adjustments, mute your hearing aids, or toggle several other special features without having to use the smartphone.
Surflink accessories are used to connect any Bluetooth-ready mobile device to Starkey Muse, Soundlens and Z Series hearing aids, SurfLink streaming solutions include; SurfLink Mini Mobile for cell-phone calls; and SurfLink Remote Microphone 2, which can be worn by a conversation partner to aid one-on-one conversations or settings with multiple speakers.
SurfLink Media 2, streams audio in stereo from TVs and MP3 players directly to your hearing aids. Surflink Remote is a hand-held pushbutton controller for hearing aid volume and other functions. And SurfLink Mobile 2, a cell phone transmitter, assistive listening device, media streamer and hearing aid remote all rolled into one.
Starkey tinnitus solutions
Starkey offers personalized tinnitus relief solutions with all its product models and technology levels. The company's Multiiflex Tinnitus Technology, adjustable via the Starkey TruLink smartphone app, generates tinnitus masking sounds that the user can customize to bring relief from ringing and other noises in the head. Starkey's tinnitus algorithm intelligently sets the tinnitus stimulus according to the patient's audiogram. And up to 24 bands of frequency adjustments enable the hearing-aid users to work with the audiologist to find the masking sound that works best.