The Oticon Connect Clip Scam

From the OTICON FAQ for Connect Clip:

What is the battery lifetime of ConnectClip?The battery total life expectancy is at least 2 years based on daily charging, with 80% battery capacity remaining after 720 charge/re-charge cycles.

Can the battery be replaced? The battery can only be replaced by sending in the ConnectClip to Oticon’s Repair Dept. It cannot be replaced by the hearing care provider.

So in May of 2018 I purchased a Oticon OPN 1’s A TV 3.0 box, and the Connect Clip. The connect Clip is retail $250. Not cheap.

The connect clip for me is invaluable, I use it every day. A couple of months ago I noticed it was not holding a charge, I called in. Got the typical run around, make sure you are charging it every day, which I do. Make sure the cable is good, which it is. Blah Blah Blah. So finally the ConnectClip got the the point where it is only lasting about two hours.

The FAQ says AT LEAST 2 years worth of use, but I’m not holding them to that. Different routines of use can account for longer or shorter total battery life. So no biggie, I will send it in to have the battery replaced just like they say you can do in their FAQ. “The battery can only be replaced by sending in the ConnectClip to Oticon’s Repair Dept. It cannot be replaced by the hearing care provider.”

I go to my provider and ask him to send it in for me to get a new battery replaced, he calls Oticon to get the repair price, and Oticon says, oh we don’t replace batteries. It only has a 1 year warranty, your customer will have to buy a new Connect Clip for another $250, plus shipping plus tax.

Way to go Oticon. Your business ethics leave much to be desired. You say you can send the ConnectClip in for a battery replacement however, that is a lie. After 1 year, you have to spend another $250.

The battery is a proprietary battery made by Synergy that would literally take 10 minutes to solder into place. BUT NO! They want another $250.

Shame on you Oticon for blatant consumer fraud. I pay $5000 for hearing aids, and you want to stiff me for a new Connect Clip because you lie about replacing the batteries when they wear out.

Not a happy customer. If you can 't replace the batteries then say so up front so I, as a consumer, can make an informed purchasing decision. If the batteries are supposed to last for at least 2 years, then warranty them for 2 years. Or say, while the batteries should last for at least 2 years, if they fail after the 1 year warranty you will have to buy an entire new Connect Clip.

I am right on the verge of calling the Attorney General’s Office of the State of Nevada Consumer fraud division and filing a complaint for consumer fraud. (Batteries worn out, no problem send them in for repair! JUST KIDDING, buy a new CONNECT CLIP.)

That’s called BAIT and SWITCH. It’s illegal!

Dr. Greg Lousignont

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That can’t be right. It’s “People First”, remember? My beef with the Connect Clip is that it could so easily have been a TV streamer as well. Oticon could have either included the AptX LL codec for connection to a generic tv streamer. Or they could have included a line-in jack for connection to the tv’s audio-out. Either would have enabled tv-streamer functionality on the Connect Clip. No, they wanted to sell you a separate tv streamer. This is after taking your thousands of dollars for the hearing aid.

If the FAQ says the battery is replaceable, they should be held to that.

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Wow, that is a really B.S. response. Did you make any inflammatory / harsh remarks for them to say that?

I hope you told them about the battery change rule. Also, I’m not from your country, but you should go ahead and report their misleading condition / offer.

Not defending but this is hardly unique to them. Thus is why right to repair laws are so important. Manufacturers are increasingly locking down products to force repurchasing or upgrading. Notice many hearing aids are rechargeables now? Yep. Same thing.

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Before I would pay Oticon for another Connectclip, I would take my old one to a computer/electronics repair biz, and ask if they could replace the battery in it. They should be able to find a replacement battery of same voltage/wattage and physical size for it.

I must not use my ConnectClip as hard and as much as most. My clip last all day for me, but I mostly use it for a remote, and to stream from my MacBook and sometime to be completely hands free.

First off cop704 - great post and sorry to hear Oticon’s not living up to general company standards and replacing worn out/faulty batteries, which every HA manufacturer should do for peanuts. You definitely have a strong legal case with the company and wonder if small claims court might be an answer. Of course you win but how do you force a foreign company to pay up? Maybe by continued posting here and on net?

Your spot on about “bait and switch” and it happens on so many HA accessories. And one has to wonder if at some point if some of the blame needs to be directed to your HA vendor/supplier. The mark up on HA accessories is not only obscene but also (not guaranteed) to always make the user satisfied. Yet I find many times HA dealers push accessories items without even knowing (1) how they work nor (2) how they are replaced. Anyone buying something with a battery inside would assume it’s easily replaceable when needed. Yet if Oticon or your HA dealer think its normal to sell battery operated items (that cost $250) and not tell the purchaser (that battery operated items) have to be thrown away after battery expires - well they certainly will have legal issues down the road.

One dumb question. I thought clip-on HA accessories for bluetooth, tv connection, etc. just needed a regular battery of some size and not a rechargeable battery. Also if you bought a Oticon OPN 1’s A TV 3.0 box I would assume that unit is outlet powered? Why would Oticon want to have someone daily or weekly recharge batteries over and over again on something other than a rechargeable hearing aid? Does the Roger Pen, Roger Select require battery replacement/shipment to Phonak shop when needed? And if so what’s the cost???

Regarding Widex/Phonak (and things might of changed) I could alway have my custom mold receiver replaced at my Widex dealer’s office in five minutes. In and out with new receiver for say $80. But when I tested a Phonak hearing aid I found out the receiver could not be replaced by my HA dealer and had to be sent to a Phonak shop for receiver replacement. Well I didn’t keep the Marvel but needless to say I wonder what Phonak’s charge would of been to replace a simple receiver in a custom acrylic ear mold? In addition to the cost of a receiver. And for “newbie’s” here it’s quite normal for a HA receiver to be replaced 16 month to 2 years. So factor in that extra cost over the life of your hearing aid.

The TV box does plug in and it works great for streaming. However the connect clip is a wearable device that allows your hearing aids to communicate between your HA and your android phone. It allows you to answer your phone, change programs, increase decrease volume and listen to your phone. I listen to the radio on my phone throughout the day.

My provider is superb, and he didn’t know much about the connect clip, I had researched it when I ordered it. I actually went through my Medicare insurance so the purchase was actually made through Hearing Care Solutions and then I was referred to one of their participation Audi in town to fit them. All they knew about the ConnectClip is what Oticon publishes in their literature.

I could replace the battery if I could find it, a little solder and Bob’s your uncle. However, I have a feeling it is a proprietary battery made especially for this connect clip.

It’s a shame because I love the HA, the streamer and the Connect Clip, I just didn’t expect to get “clipped” for another $250 for less than 2 years of use.

Doc

Well the least Oticon could do for you (if not a total refund for false advertising) is to tell you the type of battery the connect clip uses so you can try to find it on your own. Of course when you say “solder” its not going to be an easy (pull battery out and push new battery in). How can a company like Oticon make state of the art HA’s but then sell connect-clip as a two year (or less) throw-away item? Crazy

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I have the Phonak Marvel M90-R. When I recently had a problem replacing a wax guard my audiologist replaced the receiver under warranty. She also replaced the other receiver as she said it was a good idea to replace both of them at the same time. I watched her do it and it looked like a simple procedure.

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Well most people know replacing a wax guard is a simple matter that takes five seconds. On the other hand replacing a hearing aid receiver is completely different since in many cases the receiver mold has to be pried/forced open to do the replacement. Buy I also trialed a M90-R last year with a very experience Audi. Was told point blank - when receiver goes bad M90 goes back to the Phonak shop to be replaced.

And I should mention I was incorrect stating earlier the location of the Phonak Marvel 90 receiver. It’s actually located in the HA itself and not in the receiver. Most audi’s won’t open up a hearing aid case (versus a custom ear mold) to replace a receiver. You could screw up a warranty big time fooling around/opening up a HA case/body. Scary

I couldn’t get the receiver to release the wax guard and neither could my audiologist. It looked like it was broken and wedged tight. That’s why she replaced the receiver. My Marvels are RIC (Receiver In Canal).

It’s interesting that your audiologist has to send a Phonak Marvel M90 back to Phonak to have a receiver replaced and mine can do an immediate receiver replacement in her office.

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Well my M90 were behind the ear so maybe that’s the difference. I also was a blown away when I was told the receiver was actually (now) in the aid body itself and not inside my new acrylic ear molds. I did some what of a “double take” and said “I thought a few years back the reason to move the receiver from the HA body to the ear mold was to improve hearing levels with receiver closer to ear” Well for what ever reason Phonak decided to put the receiver back in the HA body - for the BTE model.

As I’ve mentioned before I think the Marvel’s could be a very good HA for mild to mid-range hearing loss users. With my hearing loss the M90 just didn’t have the gain I needed But now I’m totally confused on the proper location of a HA receiver as it relates to a BTE hearing aid.

There is apparently some confusion. Yes, the Phonak Audeo Marvel M90 is BTE (Behind The Ear), but the receiver is not in the aid body itself. The receiver itself is in the ear canal.

Yes, looking at your audiogram, the Marvel might not be a good solution for you.

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Not surprising. Hearing aid manufacturers are not ethical nor are the glorified hearing salespeople (aka audiologists) that sell them. I’ve been wearing aids for over 50 years and they all the same. They are all out to sell you the latest product no matter how coyly they go about it. Once you’ve got it and they are paid you generally find out that the support never comes through. I am currently wearing the opn and the only better hearing is through the tv adapter. They claim that there is too much spacial interference time hear another’s voice clearly from 3 feet away with no other background or voice noise. Right? I recently purchased custom molds from Oticon and first ones fit loose, the replacements actually just fall out as they have no canal shape like my ear. The next replacements were white and looked like octopuses to hold them in my ear. They tried to convince me that my ear canal did not have enough shape to hold them in place. I’ve only had at least a dozen canal aids and not once have any of them fallen out, such just more bunk. The aids are never programmed well and I don’t hear well with them at all. Of course, I can’t say that for all sound. Anything other than human voice comes in loud and clear. I can hear a candy wrapper crumble clearly from 50’ but struggle to hear a person clearly from 5’. I have worn Phonak, Starkey, Costco, Resound, Oticon and whatever else is being hyped out there.

Ron

Quite a bit of thread drift here…

Just to get back on subject:

The original question relates to the Oticon Connect Clip quality, functionality, expected (promised) battery life and replacement of the latter.

I have Oticon OPN S1s and a ConnectClip (which I don’t use very often).

I totally agree with the sentiment expressed by cop704 and others regarding product liability, warranty, customer service and satisfaction, not to mention goodwill.

As a so-far loyal Oticon customer, I look forward to hearing Oticon’s official answer and resolution to address cop704’s problem.

Let’s hear it Oticon!

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Well my experience is a lot different. I get my aids and supplies, and extra devices from the USA VA and any time I have issues I get it taken care of in a timely manner. I do feel it is because the VA is really doing it and not Oticon. As for as the connect clip it is working great for me, I use it connected to the Oticon Phone Adapter to take and make calls from our house phone, and also for streaming what ever from my laptop.

Do you really have an out house? :grin:

Not now but I grew up with one until I was about 16