Audiology involves prevention, diagnosis and treatment of hearing disorders such as congenital hearing and nerve deafness. Electronic instruments which aid in treating hearing impairments are referred as audiology devices. Three types of hearing loss are conductive, sensorineural, and mixed and classified according to the severity.
The global audiology devices market is estimated to grow at a 4.9% CAGR over the forecast phase (2014-2020). It would be worth USD 9.6 billion by 2020. Rising incidence of deafness, particularly among the geriatric population is a key growth driver. Audiology devices allow patients to regain their ability to communicate and live independently.
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Growing purchasing power and awareness levels in emerging countries like Brazil, India and China are opening up huge opportunities for various market players. They have increased investments in research and development for more efficient and cost-effective products. Technological advancements (e.g. wireless devices) are also spurring demand. Governments across the world are taking measures to improve healthcare infrastructure, thereby supporting the audiology devices market growth.
End-users of audiology devices are audiologists, service providers, and the healthcare sector. Growth is being restrained by narrowed profit margins on account of falling prices. Developing more durable and efficient products is another hurdle. Stringent regulations with respect to fair trade and product life expectancy may hamper market growth.
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Products of the audiology devices market encompass of diagnostic devices, cochlear implants, hearing aid, technological aid, and bone anchoring hearing aids (BAHA). Diagnostic devices comprise otoscopes, audiometers, and tympanometers. Hearing aids include receiver-in-the-ear (RITE), in-the-ear (ITE), behind-the-ear (BTE), and canal hearing aids. Analog and digital are the two technological aids. Hearing aids held about 64% revenue share in 2013, BTE being the dominant sub-segment. Cochlear implants are expected a rise in growth over the forecast phase.
Europe was the leading market in 2013 owing to superior healthcare infrastructure and high disposable incomes. Asia Pacific will grow at a CAGR of 7.5% from 2014 to 2020. Largely untapped markets in India and China will aid in market growth.
Reputed global vendors of the audiology devices market are Sonova Holdings AG, NHC/Amplifon, ReSound, GN ReSound Group, and Sophono. They employ strategies of mergers, acquisitions, alliances and partnerships in order to stay competitive.
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