Hearing Aids: Radio Frequencies

Department for Culture, Media and Sport written question – answered on 1st March 2017.

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Photo of Norman Lamb Norman Lamb Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Health)

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment she has made of the potential threat to the effectiveness of digital hearing aids of devices such as smartphones and tablets that operate within the 2.3 GHz and 2.5 GHz bands; and if she will take steps to protect the bandwidth frequency used by hearing aids.

Photo of Matthew Hancock Matthew Hancock Minister of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport) (Digital Policy)

We are engaged with stakeholders on this important issue. Determining and reacting to interference to wireless devices is a matter for Ofcom, the independent regulator for spectrum. Ofcom made an initial assessment that there was no issue with the use of adjacent bands but after representations from the assisted listening community have performed additional extensive and rigorous testing, using scenarios suggested by that community. The results of that testing are expected to be published soon, alongside a statement on the auction of 2.3 and 3.4 GHz spectrum.

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