VOUND is the world's first hearing-aid technology enabling deaf community to visualize surrounding sounds through augmented reality.
The problem we’re committed to solving deafness and hearing loss. According to WHO, over 600 million people have led their lives without hearing, and this number is expected to increase
reach to over 1 billion by 2020.
As of 2017, hearing loss is considered to be major public health issue and the 2nd most prevalent
health issue globally, and the number of people with hearing loss is more than those living with
Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, epilepsy, and diabetes COMBINED. However, according to the United Nations, the current production of hearing aids
meets less than 10% of the global need, and in developing countries, fewer than 1 out of 40 people use hearing aids.
There is a clearly a huge need for a solution that could solve the communication problems for
various hearing & speech disorders.
Our aim is to solve the problem by providing the population with speech and hearing disabilities a communication tool that is completely safe, reliable, risk and surgery free, requiring no prior training, has no side effects, and can be obtained at an affordable price rather than having to undergo expensive medical surgeries or purchasing overpriced inefficient devices.
The software we developed is designed to learn from past experiences through the use of artificial intelligence
(AI) to flash visual options into the glasses based on various aspects of the user and the
Vound's technology was described by Forbes magazine as a “technological breakthroughs” and it has earned multi-industry accolades from institutions such as Intel and Microsoft.
Watch our elevator pitch:
Where our solution team is headquartered or located:Cambridge, MA, USA
The dimensions of the Challenge our solution addresses:
If you selected other, please explain the dimension of the Challenge your solution addresses here:
What makes our solution innovative:
VOUND has invented the world's first augmented reality (AR) hearing-aid headset which convert
surrounding sounds into visual forms, e.g. images, flashing, colors.
The technology is based on a patent-pending algorithm that uses a combination of augmented
reality and AI to interpret sounds and convert them into projections on a display screen in real-
time at a fraction of the cost of cochlear implants or hearing aids.
How technology is integral to our solution:
We use several unique technologies in the creation of our solution such as Natural Language Processing, augmented reality, Machine learning, Artificial intelligence, and speech recognition. Moreover, we developed a patent pending technology in the field of augmented reality and build the world's first audio database that includes important alarms and sounds from the surrounding environment that individuals with hearing loss need to understand/be aware off in their daily life.
Our solution goals over the next 12 months:
Complete the development of our AR headset and make sure it is perfectly working for user testing.
Finish building our mobile app and have it ready to be released across deaf schools in Boston.
Testing prototype on potential users at schools for deaf around Boston Area, New York city, DC and the Bay Area.
Interviewing potential customers/partners/users and collect data on their experience and feedback.
Prepare for a crowdfunding funding campaign on Kickstarter.
Our vision over the next three to five years to grow and scale our solution to affect the lives of more people:
Over the past 2 years, our team had completely built an MVP, and developed a prototype as
well as a beta version of our application.
Regarding user testing and market research: we conducted testing for our technology with +250
individual with hearing loss n a regular basis to understand their feedback. We also started to talk
with several potential partners such as deaf schools and industry partners such as Microsoft.
Finally, we also filed for several patents protect our technology.
Our vision: is to reach 10,000,000 persons are hard of hearing and close to 1,000,000 are functionally deaf over the next three to five years.
Our promotional video:
The key characteristics of the populations who will benefit from our solution in the next 12 months:
The regions where we will be operating in the next 12 months:
The countries where we currently operate:
Where we plan to expand in the next 12 months:
How we will reach and retain our customers or beneficiaries:
Our solution currently in the prototyping phase and we had visited several schools for deaf/hard of hearing and regularly conduct testing for our technology and latest prototypes.
How will the communities you are targeting access it?
We currently visit the deaf schools to test the technology but we started to receive LOIs from both schools and individuals.
How many people we are currently serving with our solution:
How directly affected by your solution: It will directly affect their daily life, providing individuals with speech and hearing disabilities with a communication tool that is completely safe, reliable, risk and surgery free, requiring no prior training, has no side effects, and can be obtained at an affordable price rather than having to undergo expensive medical surgeries or purchasing overpriced inefficient devices.
We're expecting +1M deaf would use our product within the next 3 years.
How many people we will be serving with our solution in the 12 months and the next 3 years:
The goal to be in 10 deaf schools by the end of the year and reach +1000 deaf persons within 12 months.
How our solution team is organized:For-Profit
Explaining our organization:
How many people work on our solution team:5
How many years we have been working on our solution:1-2 years
The skills our solution team has that will enable us to attract the different resources needed to succeed and make an impact:
Our team consists members have a diverse array of backgrounds, from technical expertise, in-particular in augmented reality and Machine learning, to business expertise includes being an analyst at the Harvard College Consulting Group, and a Private Equity Intern in EFG Hermes. Our team members also had industry experience interning at Facebook, Google, and Tesla. Finally a team member had personally over 7 ear surgeries, and while he was younger had a lot of trouble hearing. This made him being very motivated to help children and adults who might not have the resources to undergo so many surgeries.
Our revenue model:
We'll first work with customers who suffer from congenital hearing loss, which means they were born without hearing. Then, we'll work with individuals with (gradual hearing loss) which they were born with ability to hear but lost hearing over time. The users for this solution are individuals who suffer various hearing impairments and speech disorders including mild, moderate, severe, and profound Hearing loss (which range 25dB and 95dB).
Target market by numbers: The global hearing aids market was valued at USD 5.69 billion in 2015 and expected to reach USD 9.07 billion.
Why we are applying to Solve:
We first heard about Solve thought NEXUS Global Summit and from the talk, we believe by exposure to the community, and help us form partnerships.
The key barriers for our solution:
Mainly awareness and the right connections with stakeholders and various NGOs/organizations.
The types of connections and partnerships we would be most interested in if we became Solvers:
Mr Ali Mohamed VOUND