We all hear sound through both our bone(bone transmitted) and eardrums(air transmitted) but the most sound is heard by our eardrum. The eardrum converts sound wave to vibrations and then transmitted cochlea(inner ear).
How we usually hear:
Normal sound waves are actually tiny(very small) vibrations in the air. The vibrations travel through the air to our inner ear. After that our eardrums decode these vibrations and sound waves into a different type of vibrations which is further received by the Cochlea(or inner ear) The Cochlea is connected to our auditory nerve, which works to transmits the sounds to our brain.
How we hear with bone conduction:
Bone Conduction bypasses the eardrums or we can say sound does not go through the eardrum. In bone conduction listening, the bone conduction devices (like headphones) perform the role of your eardrums. These devices decode sound waves and then convert them into vibrations that can be received directly by the inner ear to the eardrum is never involved. At last the “sound” reach the ears as vibrations through the bones and skin. This is how we hear with the bone conduction.
History of Bone Conduction & It’s 5 Industries Thriving using this Technology:
In normal headphones, the sound vibrations are sent directly through the air whereas, bone-conduction headphones send vibrations directly into the top of your jaw. This is done because they don’t isolate audio as regular headphones do. This makes them a good choice of headphones for runners, cyclists, construction workers, office employees or just people who want to pay attention to their surroundings.
They offer a much fuller sound compared to traditional headphones or earbuds, and they have a weaker bass response and quieter volume. On the plus side, its most pairs are wireless, sweat-proof, flexible, and comfortable, and they have easy-to-use controls built-in for quickly adjusting volume and switching songs.
If you still want to hear the birds, cars honking, and people calling out your name to get your attention while you’re listening to tunes, you’ll love them — but if you want something to block external noise, consider a pair of noise-canceling headphones otherwise you can use our other wireless earbuds picks instead.
The following 4 major industries have benefited from this technology:
Hearing aid(s) users.
Since 1977 more than 100,000 hearing loss patients have been fitted with a bone conduction device known as a BAHA (Bone Anchored Hearing Aid). That’s right if you’ve never tried it, it’s definitely possible to wear headphones while wearing hearing aids.
After the invention of this bone conduction mechanism, the military was one of the first to implement this technology by using behind-the-ear style headsets for communication on the battlefield.
This was a great help for the people because it helps the user to retain full awareness of ambient sounds (since the headset sits behind and not in the ear) while it also enabling the ability to transmit wirelessly through bone conduction.
Many local clever units have also adapted this technology thanks to companies like Invisio.
Bone conduction headphones have also become increasingly popular in the music industry. In 2008, Audio Bone become one of the first mainstream bone conduction headphones to enter the sports headphones in the scene.
They claimed equivalent sound quality while also allowing the user to hear ambient noises since the headphone didn’t cover any part of the ear. There are many advancements going on in this technology which is increasing its popularity among every growing headphone community, especially runners or cyclists who want both music and exposure to ambient sound for safety.
Using bone conduction technology underwater is totally awesome, there is no other way to say it. In 1996, this technology was actually patented but Casio was one of the first to popularize this technology in scuba diving with their Logosease device.
This Logosease device works on bone conduction technology and acts as an underwater transceiver. It is coupled with ultrasound at a range of 32 kHz to enable wireless communication as long as you are within visual range.
Ambient noise solution
After seeing such popularity, Apple is also creating earphones that allow the user to be fully aware of their surroundings and improve speech recognition relating to the immediate surroundings of something.
Hope the article helps you learn in details about the history and application of bone conduction technology. Thanks for visiting.