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The History of Beltone

Founded in 1940, Beltone remains the most trusted brand for quality products and care among its patients.



Beltone opens for business in Chicago. Model H™ hearing aid is introduced.

  • Model_H_1940


    Beltone opens for business in Chicago. Model H™ hearing aid is introduced.

  • Mono_Pac_1941_fs


    Beltone launches Mono-Pac™, the industry's first all-in-one hearing aid.

  • Magazine_Ad_1949_fs


    Beltone advertises in National Geographic magazine and introduces seven minute films for the new invention – television.

  • Lyric_1952_fs


    A new version of the of the popular Beltone Lyric™ body aid is introduced, using vacuum tubes and transistors.

  • Beltone_TV_1956_fs


    Dave Barnow, the Executive Vice President of Beltone at the time, takes Hear-N-See, the first ear-level binaural hearing aids, on television.

  • Hear_and_See_1956_fs


    The Hear-N-See eyeglass aid is shown.

  • Minuet_1958_fs


    Beltone launches its first behind-the-ear hearing aid, the Minuet™.

  • Beltone_Factory_1963_fs


    Beltone moves to new state-of-the-art custom manufacturing plant in Chicago.

  • Empire_1964_fs


    Empire™ is introduced.

  • Celabrate_25_Years_1965_fs


    Sam and Faye Posen celebrate Beltone's 25th anniversary.

  • Vivo_1970_fs


    Beltone introduces Vivo™, one of the first in-the-ear hearing aids so tiny and powerful, it could help those with severe hearing loss.

  • Petite_Aid_1988_fs


    Actor Eddie Albert, Beltone spokesman for the Beltone Petite™ hearing aid.

  • Opera_Max_1989


    Beltone unveils the most powerful canal aid on the market, the Opera Max™.

  • Invisa_Hand_1994


    Beltone introduces Invisa™, a hearing aid so small that it is virtually invisible.

  • SelectaFit_1996


    Beltone SelectaFit™ fitting software, for customized patient fittings, is introduced.

  • Original_Digital_1998_fs


    Beltone introduces Beltone Digital™, its first hearing aid with digital technology.

  • Beltone_AVE_2002_fs


    Beltone AVE.™, fitting and verification system for hearing aids introduced.

  • Edge_Charger_2006


    Beltone Edge|Action and Edge|2 are introduced, offering Wind Noise Suppression™ features which reduce turbulence around the microphones.

  • One_2007


    Beltone One™ is unveiled featuring Smart Beam™ and Speech Spotter™ technologies, reducing overwhelming background noise.

  • Accessories_Lineup_2013_fs


    Beltone introduces its hearing aid accessories lineup, allowing users to experience the ultimate in personalized sound.

  • First_iPhone_2014_fs


    Beltone First™ hearing aids receive clear, clean sound streamed from your iPhone®, iPad®…like tiny wireless headphones.

  • HearPlus_App_2014_fs


    Beltone launches the HearPlus™ App. HearPlus allows you to adjust volumes and settings, check hearing aid battery status–from your iPhone®.

Where it all started

The Beltone legacy began in the 1930's when Sam and Faye Posen recognized the need for personalized and miniaturized hearing aid technology. As a way to help a friend with hearing loss, Sam knew that the hearing aids of that time could not offer the individualized hearing capabilities that he had in mind. Sam wanted the individual to hear the music of life come through “as clear as the tone of a bell.”

By 1940 Beltone was open for business in a modest building in downtown Chicago, Illinois.

In that first year, Beltone introduced their first hearing aid model, the Beltone Model H™.

The 1950's

While Ed Sullivan was the leader on network television, Beltone was just getting into the television game with their first national TV commercial. The Minuet™ was introduced – the first behind-the-ear hearing aid.

The 1960's

Larry Posen (son of Sam and Faye), invented the Micro-Module™ circuit, which made possible the tiny, but powerful Serenade™ behind-the-ear hearing aid. The first in-the-ear hearing aid Beltone created is called The Bravo™, also using the Micro-Module™ circuit.

The 1970's

Beltone celebrated its 30th anniversary with a 50,000 square foot addition to its headquarters in Chicago, featuring a walk-in virtually sound-proof room, to permit more sophisticated research into the challenges of the hard of hearing.

The 1980's – the decade of decadence and new technology

Beltone introduced the ODE™ hearing aid, its first custom in-the-canal hearing aid. Actress Jane Wyatt appeared in Beltone television and print ads and actor Eddie Albert signed on as the Beltone spokesman. By the close of the 80's, Beltone unveiled the Alto-Max™ and Alto-Super Max™ in-the-ear hearing aids, along with the Opera Max™, the most powerful canal aid on the market at the time.

The 1990's

Technology continued to evolve at a rapid pace and Beltone stayed ahead of the game in the hearing aid field. In 1994, Beltone introduced Invisa, the first virtually invisible hearing aid. By the end of the 1990's, Beltone unveiled their first hearing aid with digital (instead of analog) technology – the Beltone Digital™.

The 2000's and beyond

Keeping up with current technology trends, in 2002, a brand new, state-of-the-art fitting and verification system for hearing aids was introduced – called the Beltone AVE™. In 2011, Beltone launched the first wireless streaming hearing aid, called Beltone True™, which offers wireless streaming capabilities from hand-held devices. Beltone's wireless accessories offer the “gold standard” 2.4 GHz frequency band – allowing sound to stream at the highest speed possible. Beltone's technology transmits up to seven times more data than other systems. In 2014, Beltone introduced the first of its kind – a hearing aid with streaming capabilities from any iPhone®, iPad® or iPod touch® device – called Beltone First™.

Today, Beltone continues to focus on the needs of its customers through the research and development of innovative new hearing technologies. Technology is rapidly changing, and that means hearing aid technology is always evolving.

Stay tuned for new product releases!