Starkey Hearing Aids

Starkey Hearing Aids Review: Models, Costs, and Features in 2021

For added features you won't find with other hearing aid brands, take a look at Starkey.
By Jennifer Walker-Journey
July 12, 2021
Each product we feature has been independently selected and reviewed by our editorial team. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.

Key takeaways

  • You can purchase Starkey hearing aids in person at hearing centers and audiologists' offices.
  • Starkey hearing aid model options include the basic Picasso and two different Livio AI devices.
  • You can get a variety of styles with Starkey devices, including invisible-in-canal and behind-the-ear or in-the-ear styles.
  • Starkey Livio AI devices range in price from $1,549 to $2,899. 
  • Starkey hearing aids tend to last around three to seven years.

For people with hearing loss, a pair of hearing aids can greatly improve every dimension of life. If you're new to hearing aids or you're ready for an upgrade, deciding on the right brand, style, and model can be intimidating. 

To help guide you through the process, Health editors researched dozens of brands for sale online and in traditional hearing centers.

Innovation and research

Starkey Hearing, now known as Starkey Hearing Technologies, was founded in 1967 as a hearing aid retail and repair shop. In the 50-plus years since, the company began manufacturing its own hearing aids and eventually grew to become one of the top five hearing aid companies in the world. 

Starkey is the only wholly owned American manufacturer of hearing aids, headquartered in Eden Prairie, Minnesota. The company invests in research and development, continually introducing new models with more innovations and technologies designed to improve sound along with user experience. 

Here, we take a closer look at Starkey hearing aids to help you hone in on the right pair of hearing aids for your needs.    

 Pros of Starkey hearing aids

  • Starkey hearing aids are widely available at hearing centers and audiologists' offices nationwide.  
  • Starkey currently offers three different models of hearing aids: a basic Picasso option and two Livio AI options with artificial intelligence.
  • Starkey offers a 30-day, money-back guarantee.
  • The Livio AI options offer features such as fall detection, translation technology, and the ability to share with selected people information such as physical activity and social engagement. 
  • Multiple behind-the-ear and in-the-ear styles are available, including an invisible-in-canal option. 

Cons of Starkey hearing aids

  • Some models can be expensive compared to similar brands on the market. 
  • Starkey has only three models to choose from.

Key features of Starkey hearing aids

Features vary depending on the model. 

  • Feedback management
  • Wireless streaming
  • Tinnitus technology
  • Bluetooth technology
  • Smartphone connectivity
  • Rechargeable batteries in some models
  • Fall detection alerts (Livio Edge AI)
  • Language translation (Livio Edge AI) 

Styles include:

  • Behind-the-ear
  • Receiver-in-the-canal
  • In-the-ear
  • In-the-canal
  • Completely-in-the-canal
  • Invisible-in-canal

Starkey hearing aid models

You can choose from three Starkey hearing aid models currently on the market:

Related Items

Starkey Picasso

VISIT SITE

The Picasso is the basic option, but it still packs plenty of features, including:

  • Custom design to fit each individual's unique ear anatomy
  • Wireless streaming of TV, phone calls, and music 
  • Discrete in-the-ear fit
  • Gradual adjustment to sounds
  • Feedback-free technology
  • Customizable tinnitus technology

Starkey Livio AI

VISIT SITE

The Starkey Livio AI is a step up from the Picasso. It uses integrated sensors and artificial intelligence to provide better sound quality. The Livio AI also offers other features, including:

  • Rechargeable battery with 24-hour battery life 
  • Smartphone technology that allows you to control and adjust your hearing aids with the Thrive app
  • Brain and body tracking that tracks steps, time spent standing, and other features
  • Thrive Care, which enables people in your life to check in on you anytime

Starkey Livio Edge AI

VISIT SITE

The newest Starkey model, the Livio Edge AI, is considered a top-of-the-line hearing aid that has all the features of the Livio AI, including better sound performance in the most challenging listening environments. It also offers other features, including: 

  • Fall detection and alerts, which notifies another party if the hearing aids sense you have fallen
  • Language translation, which enables your hearing aids to translate different languages to your hearing aid in real time 

How to find Starkey hearing aids near me

Starkey hearing aids aren't sold directly to consumers; they are for sale only through hearing centers or audiologists' office. To find an audiologist near you, visit the American Academy of Audiology. Some customers prefer to purchase through a discount network, where you may be able to get hearing aids at a lower price. To complete your purchase, you'll be connected to an audiologist in your area for evaluation, fitting, and adjustment of your device.

How does Starkey compare to other brands?

We compared the Starkey Livio AI model with some of its top competitors. Here's what we found:

Brand/model

Technology

Adjustment

Battery

Price range

Hearing aid with built-in health tracker 

Remote phone app

Rechargeable and battery-powered options

$1,549 to $2,899

Ultrafast sound processing

Remote phone app

Rechargeable and battery-powered options

$1,399 to $2,299

Customized background noise control

Local fitting included with purchase

Rechargeable

$1,299 to $2,399

Detects and prevents feedback proactively

Local fitting included with purchase

Rechargeable and battery-powered options

$1,599 to $2,299

Starkey hearing aids cost and payment options

All of the top hearing aid brands vary in price significantly. You can expect to pay upward of $4,500 or more for the Starkey Livio AI model at retail stores. However, you can get Livio AI hearing aids through discount providers for a fraction of the price. The model ranges in price from $1,549 to $2,899 on Zip Hearing. 

Unfortunately, most insurance plans do not cover hearing aids, but some companies may cover a portion of the cost. Original Medicare doesn't cover hearing aids, but some Medicare Advantage plans may. Contact your health care provider to see what type of hearing coverage is available to you. 

Hearing aids are considered an eligible reimbursement for a flexible spending account (FSA), health savings account (HSA), or a health reimbursement arrangement (HRA) purchase. 

Payment plans may be available through the provider you purchase your Starkey hearing aids from.

Starkey customer service and satisfaction

Starkey is rated "excellent" by ComsumersAdvocate.org, with a 4.2/5 overall rating. However, its "customer experience" rating falls a bit short with a 3.5/5. The company has a sound reputation with an A+ rating by the BBB, and a 3.8/5 rating on Trustpilot. 

 Starkey hearing aids reviews 

Bottom line

Starkey hearing aids are highly regarded as one of the top hearing device brands, especially because of the Livio AI features. Customers are lukewarm about the hearing aid company's customer experience, but overall, the brand has a great reputation and the features seem to outweigh most customer service complaints. 

If you're an older adult and detecting or preventing falls at home is increasingly important to you, you'll appreciate the Starkey Livio AI, which has artificial intelligence that can detect a fall. Add yourself or others as a contact in the app, and the hearing aid app will notify a loved one if you fall. These kinds of features are crucial for adults aging in place

Frequently asked questions

How much is a Starkey hearing aid?

Through Zip Hearing, Starkey hearing aids cost from $1,399 for the Picasso model up to $2,899 for the top-of-the-line Livio Edge AI model. 

How long do Starkey hearing aids last?

Starkey hearing aids have an estimated lifespan of three to seven years. 

Which is better, Phonak or Starkey?

According to ConsumerAdvocate.org, both Phonak and Starkey are good hearing aids. Starkey, with an overall 4.2/5 rating, edges out Phonak, which has a respectable 3.9/5. Starkey ranked higher in hearing aid style, features and price, and battery life. But Phonak won hands down in consumer experience with a perfect 5/5 rating compared to Starkey at 3.5/5. 

How much do Starkey Picasso hearing aids cost?

Starkey's basic model hearing aid, the Picasso, ranges in price at discount provider Zip Hearing from $1,399 to $2,299. You can expect to pay about 30% more from retailers.

Jennifer Walker-Journey is a lifelong writer of most anything, including travel destinations, psychedelic and prescription medicines, public health issues, and exotic foods. Her work has been featured in USA Today, HowStuffWorks, Psychedelic Spotlight, PlanetSHINE, Better Homes and Gardens, Women, Health, and Sea Island Life, and Omni magazines. When she isn't writing, she runs, almost daily, toward her last best time in hopes someday she'll be foolish enough to attempt another marathon.