Apple and the medical tech company, Masimo, have a long history, but more recently, the latter made a claim in 2020 seeking damages for patent infringement. Today, the court found Apple guilty and the United States International Trade Commission will consider banning the import of Apple Watches Series 6 and above.
Right before the release of the first Apple Watch, the Cupertino-based company sought to collaborate with Masimo. But Masimo’s CEO says that the meeting’s purpose was to poach certain employees and extract information and expertise on certain Masimo products. More precisely, the modern blood oxygen sensor technology that is used in hospitals.
Apple really did sign Masimo’s chief medical officer shortly after the meeting, though.
As a result, Masimo sued Apple in 2020 for infringing 10 different Masimo patents and asked for a ban on Apple Watch sales in the US.
There’s still a final decision to be made by USITC and it’s going to be a hard one to unravel. The commission will have to look closely into Apple’s pulse oximeter and its implementation and decide whether or not Apple used Masimo’s trade secrets to develop the mobile technology. The USITC works independently from the court, so it may come to a different decision.