Pulse Ox Company Masimo Accuses Apple of Delaying Legal Battle to Sell More Apple Watches

Back in January, medical device company Masimo levied a lawsuit against Apple, accusing the company of stealing trade secrets and improperly using Masimo inventions related to health monitoring in the Apple Watch.

apple watch series 6 blood oxygen monitoring 1
Masimo is known for its pulse oximetry devices, and Apple just recently debuted the Apple Watch Series 6 with blood oxygen monitoring capabilities. Following the launch of the Series 6, Masimo has accused Apple of attempting to delay the legal proceedings in order to sell more watches and gain a more dominant share of the smart watch market.

As highlighted by Bloomberg, Apple has not officially responded to the original January lawsuit, instead filing requests to dismiss the trade secret part of the case and to have Masimo patents invalidated. Apple has asked the trial court to put the case on hold until the patent issue is resolved, which could take a significant amount of time.

Apple told the court that delaying the case until a patent review will narrow the issues and "reduce wasted resources." With no hold, the first hearing on the case will take place in April 2021.

According to Masimo, the potential postponement would allow Apple to "seize on a critical window of opportunity to capture an emerging field," using its "considerable resources and ecosystem" to capture market share with no regard for Masimo patent technology.

Masimo CEO Joe Kiani said in the filing that Masimo believes Apple's customers see the Series 6 as a "medical product," which can "harm consumers" and "reduce [Masimo's] opportunities to sell truly clinical-grade products to consumers."

Masimo accused Apple of stealing secret information by pretending to have a working relationship with Masimo and then poaching Masimo employees. Masimo also believes that Apple is infringing on 10 Masimo patents, and says that Apple relied on Masimo technology when developing the light-based heart rate sensor used in the Apple Watch.

Apple allegedly contacted Masimo in 2013, ahead of the launch of the original Apple Watch, and asked to meet for a potential collaboration. Apple was aiming to "understand more" about Masimo's products and was allegedly seeking to add Masimo technology to future Apple devices. Masimo said that the two companies had productive meetings, but then Apple began hiring important employees. Apple ultimately hired several Masimo employees including Michael O'Reilly, who had served as Chief Medical Officer and EVP of Medical Affairs at Masimo. He has been working on Health Special Projects at Apple, and had a hand in the development of the Apple Watch.

Masimo in its original January lawsuit asked the court to block Apple from using Masimo's patented inventions and it asked the court for damages.

Top Rated Comments

destroyer2012 Avatar
13 months ago
Well.. normally I hate frivolous suits against Apple but it definitely feels like thats pretty fishy. I'd be pissed if someone reached out to my company to collaborate, hired my best people, and then used their money to keep me from recourse.
Score: 23 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Hammerd Avatar
13 months ago
So this is what Apple is nowadays: a company that dries up smaller promising companies and that steal their IP, while wanting to be seen as a distuptive pro-environment pro-lgbt company that want to make the world a better place. This is just clowning of course, they just want everyone's money. They are even ready to kill companies that work with their platform (Tiles, fitness apps, music and movies/series streaming apps, banks... next what). That's pathetic that they act so agressively, they even sue companies that have a fruit shaped logo... and want to look like the good guys
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
SpringKid Avatar
13 months ago

Masimo CEO Joe Kiani said in the filing that Masimo believes Apple's customers see the Series 6 as a "medical product," which can "harm consumers" and "reduce [Masimo's] opportunities to sell truly clinical-grade products to consumers."
In what world does this make sense? ?
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
now i see it Avatar
13 months ago
Usually such behavior would be attributed to a scum bag company.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Ukiyo Evenings Avatar
13 months ago

Apple is already crushing the wearables market. I dont understand the statement in this lawsuit. What percent of new users are getting the watch only because of O2 sensors? Mostly the company is concerned they join the long list of dedicated devices getting incorporated into a multifunction device.
It’s not about getting the watch exclusively for the oximeter, rather, the nullification of demand for devices as a result of having an Apple Watch that does the job. Although I hope people who do need pulse oximeters would actually get a certified medical device instead of the watch for keeping an eye on their SpO2.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Peperino Avatar
13 months ago

Honestly, I don't care about the Trade Secrets up for debate here. From my perspective, Apple brought potentially life saving tech to the masses at an affordable price. Can we please stop worrying about profits with life saving products?

If the apple watch saves someone life because of this, its well worth it IMO.
Regardless what the product does, How is it OK for Apple to steal other companies' technology? iF they are interested they can license it or buy them. But stealing is not ok.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

apple watch series 6 product red back

Apple Watch Users More Likely to Have Medical Procedures on Their Heart, Study Finds

Wednesday June 2, 2021 9:14 am PDT by
Apple Watch users with an irregular heartbeat are not visiting doctors more often, but they are more likely to be treated with a heart procedure, a study has found (via The Verge). The study examined 125 people with atrial fibrillation and a heart-monitoring wearable, such as the Apple Watch, who visited the University of Utah Health during a 90-day period, and compared them to a group of...
apple watch series 6 refurbished

Apple Now Selling Refurbished Apple Watch Series 6 and Apple Watch SE Models

Thursday April 29, 2021 10:37 am PDT by
Apple today began selling refurbished versions of the Apple Watch Series 6 and the Apple Watch SE, both of which were released last September. Pricing on refurbished Series 6 models starts at $339, a $60 discount off of the regular price, and pricing on the SE starts at $239, which is $40 off of the standard price. These entry-level prices are for the aluminum 40mm models with GPS, with...
maxresdefault

Apple Highlights Apple Watch Series 6 Features in 'The Future of Health is on Your Wrist' Ads

Monday February 22, 2021 9:11 am PST by
Apple today shared new Apple Watch ads on its YouTube channel, highlighting the water resistance, ECG, and sleep tracking capabilities of the Apple Watch Series 6. The short 38 second ads each focus on a specific Apple Watch feature, with a narrator explaining how the Apple Watch works under water, when taking an ECG, and when being used for sleep tracking. All of the ads feature the...
PMClogonewer

Apple Ordered to Pay $309 Million for Infringing DRM Patent

Saturday March 20, 2021 3:01 am PDT by
A federal jury in Texas has ordered Apple to pay around $308.5 million to a local licensing firm for infringing a patent related to digital rights management, reports Bloomberg. Following a five-day trial, jurors on Friday said Apple must pay running loyalty fees to Texas-based Personalized Media Communications (PMC). A running loyalty is generally based on the amount of sales of a product...
apple watch ecg

Apple Watch Likely to Gain Blood Pressure, Blood Glucose, and Blood Alcohol Monitoring

Monday May 3, 2021 4:03 am PDT by
The Apple Watch may gain the ability to measure blood pressure, blood glucose, and blood alcohol levels, according to newly-revealed information about one of Apple's chosen business partners. Apple has been revealed to be the largest customer of the British electronics start-up Rockley Photonics, The Telegraph reports. Rockley Photonics has developed non-invasive optical sensors for...
one more thing november

UK Court Backs Swatch in 'One More Thing' Trademark Row With Apple

Tuesday March 30, 2021 1:48 am PDT by
Apple has lost a legal bid to block Swatch from registering Steve Jobs' famous "One more thing" saying as a trademark in the UK, reports The Telegraph. Apple argued that the Swiss watchmaker had trademarked the slogan in "bad faith," as it has been associated with Apple for more than 20 years. The late Steve Jobs often used the phrase to announce new products at the end of Apple...
prosser apple watch series 7

Prosser: Apple Watch Series 7 to Feature Flat-Edged Design, New Green Color Option

Wednesday May 19, 2021 10:49 am PDT by
The upcoming Apple Watch Series 7 will feature a flat-edged design, similar to the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro, and the addition of a new green case color option, according to Apple leaker Jon Prosser. In a video, Prosser explains that Apple is looking to redesign the Apple Watch, which has featured the same design since its launch, with the Series 7 later this year. One of the most striking ...
apple watch swim tracking

Apple Watch Series 7 to Introduce New Swim Tracking Features

Tuesday April 6, 2021 3:22 am PDT by
Apple is adding more advanced swim tracking features to the upcoming Apple Watch Series 7, according to a report from reliable Bloomberg journalist Mark Gurman. Gurman's report states that Apple is "working on new swim tracking features for the Apple Watch," although he did not offer any additional information about what this could entail. The Apple Watch is currently able to track a...
matte black macbook pro colorware

Apple Researching High-End Titanium MacBook Casings With Unique Textured Finish

Tuesday January 26, 2021 7:10 am PST by
Apple is researching the use of processed titanium with unique properties for future MacBooks, iPads, and iPhones, according to a newly-granted patent application. In a filing titled "Titanium parts having a blasted surface texture," granted by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and spotted by Patently Apple, Apple explains how various devices could adopt titanium casings with a...
record gaze tracking patent

Apple Outlines How Smart Glasses Could Record Jitter-Free, Gaze-Driven Video

Tuesday March 16, 2021 6:30 am PDT by
Multiple reports suggest that Apple is developing an augmented reality headset as well as smart glasses, and a newly granted Apple patent may provide a clue about one of the potential features that could be included in the latter device. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Tuesday granted Apple a patent describing "systems and methods for gaze-driven recording of video." Apple's...