In technology

If you’ve got a SONNET and are curious about the new cochlear implant rechargeable batteries, this post will help answer all your questions.

What Are the Rechargeable Batteries?

These new rechargeable batteries represent a new era of batteries for cochlear implants: lithium-ion technology. Here’s why that’s good:

  • Lithium is the third-lightest element out there
  • It packs a lot of power into a very small space
  • Can be charged any time, without reducing battery life

All told, this lets us develop batteries that have the best mix of size and weight.

Two Batteries, Three Configuration Options

We’ve developed two different rechargeable batteries, the Standard and the Micro.

  • Standard
    • Up to 10 hours of hearing
    • Uses the same battery cover you currently use with disposable batteries
    • SONNET weighs 9.1 grams, as compared to 10.6 grams with zinc-air batteries
    • Can be charged over 500 times
  • Micro
    • Up to 7 hours of hearing
    • Uses a new, smaller, battery cover that makes SONNET 51.4 mm tall, as compared to 56.7 with the standard battery cover
    • SONNET weighs 8.1 grams, as compared to 10.6 grams with zinc-air batteries
    • Can be charged over 500 times
SONNET Rechargeable Batteries Standard
SONNET Rechargeable Batteries Standard and Micro
SONNET Rechargeable Batteries Micro

You can get these two batteries in one of three configuration options:

  1. Three Standard batteries—up to 30 hours on a full charge
  2. Four Micro batteries—up to 28 hours on a full charge
  3. Two Standard and two Micro batteries—up to 34 hours on a full charge

Regardless of which configuration you choose, your batteries will come with a convenient charger that works via USB.

Recharging the batteries can be done at any time, thanks to their lithium-ion design. Their capacity will not be damaged by recharging them if they still have a 50% charge, for example. And charging is quick: a battery will be fully charged after only 4 hours of charging.

Works Great with WaterWear

The Standard rechargeable battery is a great choice when you’re swimming with WaterWear. When compared to rechargeable 675, alkaline, or silver-oxide batteries—which all provide 6-8 hours of hearing—the Standard rechargeable provides the longest lifetime.

The Micro rechargeable battery is not compatible with WaterWear, because of its smaller size.


To order your cochlear implant rechargeable batteries, please contact your local MED-EL representative. Approval, and availability varies depending on where you live.


Got any other questions about cochlear implant batteries? We’ve got the answers: What Batteries Should I Use With My Cochlear Implant?


For more tips about how to hear your best—how to get the most out of your MED-EL cochlear implant—subscribe to the MED-EL blog!

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