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  • Lexie Hearing is set to start selling its second-generation over-the-counter hearing aids on Oct. 17, positioning the Bose-partnered company to compete with Sony in the nascent market.
  • Bose exited the market over the summer, choosing to provide technology to Lexie rather than continue selling its own SoundControl hearing aids. The partners revealed their first product at the time of the partnership and have now followed up with the second-generation Lexie B2.
  • The new model is rechargeable, unlike the replaceable batteries of its predecessor, and $100 more expensive than its predecessor. At $999, the B2 matches the price of Sony’s device.

The FDA finalized a rule that would allow hearing aids to be sold over the counter.

Five years after the passage of legislation to allow over-the-counter hearing aid sales, the Food and Drug Administration in August published its final rule on the topic, positioning hearing aids to be available over the counter starting in mid-October.

Multiple companies plan to introduce products to market at the earliest opportunity. Sony, in partnership with Danish hearing aid maker WS Audiology, aims to bring its first product to market this month. Lexie is on a similar trajectory, with sales of the Lexie B2 Hearing Aids, Powered by Bose set to start online and through pharmacy and retail locations on Oct. 17.

The B2 features a rechargeable battery that lasts as long as 18 hours. The use of a rechargeable battery is a departure from the B1, which uses replaceable batteries that last about 56 hours. Sony’s first device uses replaceable batteries that last 70 hours, although the company plans to offer a version with a 26-hour rechargeable battery.

Lexie has matched the price of the first Sony device but also has older, less expensive products. The portfolio features the $799 Lexie Lumen, as Walgreens stated in a statement about its plans to stock the devices.