One of my monthly tasks as Sales Analyst for Phonak is to monitor official market sales data within Europe. Changes to reimbursements and subsidies affect the number of hearing aids that are sold, as funding becomes more or less available to the end user. This has an impact on the trends that can be seen within the market data.
For example, a German court ruling stated that the hearing aid subsidies should rise by 76% to 740€ per hearing aid. No one could have predicted the dramatic effect it would have on the German market.
Continue reading “The Ups and Downs of Hearing Aid Reimbursement”
Today, it’s World Usability Day. More than a hundred events will be held around the world by passionate people — I am one of them — who believe that usability is key.
Usability is about making products, even complex ones, easy to use by everyone. Of course, that is the ideal goal and you would probably agree with me that we are really far from it! It’s even worse: it looks like appliances like ovens became less usable in the past years. A few years ago I shot a 2-minute video showing a well-known Swiss politician explaining how he struggled with his new unusable oven. This was part of a project launched during World Usability Day 2006. The video (in French) is still available on Dailymotion.
Unfortunately, the oven is an example among thousands of others. Ironic as it sounds, I am writing these lines on a PC which is far from being a model of design and usability — I wish I could use my Macbook at work! But I am unfair. My PC is far better than my unengaging desktop phone. By the way, do you know why we, employees of companies and public bodies around the world, seem to be condemned to use these horrible phones ? How did they survive to the iPhone era?
Continue reading “It’s World Usability Day!”