Apple is facing a new lawsuit by Masimo Corp. over Apple Watch’s patent infringement. Bloomberg reports that Masimo has filed a complaint at the U.S. International Trade Commission in pursuit of a judgment to stop Apple Watch Series sales which allegedly uses its blood oxygen monitoring technology.
Masimo is a medical manufacturer of signal-processing technology for health care monitors. With Cercacor Laboratories, the medical sensors company filed a lawsuit against Apple in 2020, accusing the Cupertino tech giant of “maliciously stealing secret information under the pretext of a working relationship and later hiring its key officials like Masimo’s chief medical officers and Cercacor’s former chief technology officer.”
And denying the allegations, Apple filed requests to dismiss the trade-secret clause of the case and lodged petitions at the U.S Patent and Trademark Office to invalidate Masimo’s patents. The company also requested the trial court in California to keep the civil lawsuit on hold until the patent issues were resolved. Dismayed by Apple’s delaying tactics, Masimo has is now pursuing the case at the Washington agency.
Apple accused of stealing its blood oxygen monitoring technology, Masimo wants to stop the import of Apple Watch Series 6
In 2020, Apple introduced the new blood oxygen monitoring capability in Apple Watch Series 6 which lets users check their oxygen level in 10 seconds, anywhere and anytime. As per the report, Apple has stolen Masimo’s core blood oxygen monitoring technology and is seeking a ban on smartwatch sales in the US.
Apple’s Series 6 smartwatch infringes five patents for devices that use light transmitted through the body to measure oxygen levels in blood, Masimo said in a complaint filed at the Washington agency. The patented technology is key to Masimo’s core business and Apple is unfairly copying the features, the company said.
As part of its ITC complaint, Masimo said the public won’t be harmed if the Apple smartwatch is kept from the U.S. market because the pulse oximetry feature is “not essential to the public health or welfare” because the company “warns in the fine print that the blood oxygen measurements should not be relied upon for medical purposes.”
Since Masimo has filed the complaint at the Trade agency, the case is likely to come to a conclusion without delays. Therefore, the publisher estimates that the case is likely to end in a hefty settlement in which Masimo could bag up to $300 million in royalties.
The dispute is likely to end in a settlement that could net Masimo between $50 million and $300 million a year in royalties, Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Tamlin Bason said in a note Tuesday. Masimo reported $1.14 billion in sales last year. The unit that includes sales of Apple Watch reported $30.6 billion in revenue in fiscal 2020.
Apple is already facing antitrust lawsuits and investigations accusing it of anti-competitive behavior. U.S Congress is contemplating new laws allowing sideloading on iOS to reduce the company’s control over apps distribution and in-app purchases via App Store.