iData Research, a leading medical device market research agency, revealed that the U.S. hearing-aid and audiology device market was valued at over $5.7 billion in 2011.
The market, driven by technological advancements in cochlear implants, bone-anchored hearing-aids and the introduction of wireless Bluetooth capability from Starkey, GN Resound and Cochlear America, is expected to touch almost $8 billion in annual sales by 2018.
The research agency also released the results of an Audiologist survey, which reveals consumer perception and preferences of hearing-aid brands.
Over 78 percent of respondents who use Phonak, Starkey and Oticon hearing-aids indicated that quality and customer service were top concerns, whereas consumers of Siemens (News - Alert), Lyric, Unitron, and others said price and ease-of-use were comparatively more important.
The research also revealed that the influence of different advertising media on a consumer's purchase decision had a stark contrast between brands.
Among the leading brands, Phonak has gained market share in the retail and wholesale hearing-aid market with the acquisition of large group practices to broaden their U.S. distribution channels. Siemens, on the other hand, has undertaken price reduction strategy and forged alliance with retail giant Amplifon.
Another trend noted in the report is the rapid growth of cochlear implant and bone-anchored hearing-aid segments.
Dr. Kamran Zamanian, CEO of iData, attributes this growth to technological advancements in device size, sound quality and a historically low adoption rate, which is expected to increase with patient awareness campaigns. “In addition, emerging bone-anchored hearing-aid competitors such as Sophono and Sonitus Medical are expected to drive down traditionally higher prices set by Cochlear America and Oticon."
The research is part of iData's 4-report series on "Markets for Hearing-Aids and Audiology Device" that provides a comprehensive analyses of the wholesale and retail hearing-aid markets by style, circuit, battery size and more.
In an earlier report released in May, iData Research said that the Asia-Pacific patient monitoring market, including Japan, South Korea and Australia, is expected to exceed $598 million by 2017.
Rajani Baburajan is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Rajani's articles, please visit her columnist page.
Edited by Juliana Kenny