Masimo CEO claims the Apple Watch Blood Oxygen sensors are inaccurate — and that users will be "better off" without them

Apple Watch Ultra with the Blood Oxygen reader on
(Image credit: Future)

Masimo’s lawsuit against Apple continues — along with the posturing and gesticulation from its CEO, Joe Kiani. Where he sees himself as some kind of David fighting Apple’s Goliath, he speaks about the strength of Masimo’s products — and the weakness of his legal rivals.

In his most recent interview with Bloomberg, Kiani claims that Apple’s Blood Oxygen sensors in the Apple Watch Ultra 2 and Series 9 are inaccurate, adding that he “really feels that consumers are better off without it.”

Instead, he says, users should buy Masimo’s pulse oximeter, as it takes constant measurements.

In an effort to placate the legal proceedings, Apple has removed the software in the Apple Watch Series 9 and Ultra 2 models that use the blood oxygen reading equipment.

Kiani, however, doesn’t appear to be finished, continuing that “Apple is masquerading what they are offering to consumers as a reliable, medical pulse oximeter, even though it is not.” As always, the man from Masimo has strong words.

Apple has replied. The firm claims that the blood oxygen sensor is accurate, and that, in essence, Kiani isn’t telling the truth. The difference between the two oximeters is that Apple’s takes a measurement twice a day, and when the user chooses to double-check. The Masimo device takes a reading throughout the day, for what Masimo claims is ‘a more accurate reading’.

Apple argues that accuracy isn’t about how long the reading is, but how it measures up against ‘high-quality reference data’. Even so, Kiani goes on to say that Apple hasn’t reached out to him about the case — something which Apple claims is false, noting that it has a meeting with Masimo in its diary: And that mediation has already taken place.

Of 17 of Masimos patents, Apple claims that 15 have been invalidated — the rest of the ITC case pertains to the other 2.

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Tammy Rogers
Senior Staff Writer

As iMore's Senior Staff writer, Tammy uses her background in audio and Masters in screenwriting to pen engaging product reviews and informative buying guides. The resident audiophile (or audio weirdo), she's got an eye for detail and a love of top-quality sound. Apple is her bread and butter, with attention on HomeKit and Apple iPhone and Mac hardware. You won't find her far away from a keyboard even outside of working at iMore – in her spare time, she spends her free time writing feature-length and TV screenplays. Also known to enjoy driving digital cars around virtual circuits, to varying degrees of success. Just don't ask her about AirPods Max - you probably won't like her answer.

  • SvenJ
    Not my experience. I have the little fingertip Blood Oxygen meters you can buy at CVS or Walgreens. Invariably when I compare that reading with what my Apple watch says, they are either dead on, or within a percentage point. I have compared at the Drs office as well. Their little fingertip thing looks remarkably like what I have at home. Again, compares favorably. They may not be FDA 'approved', my experience is they are just as good as those little things that are, and darned more convenient. My Apple watch does measure periodically at night, and I'm certainly not setting an alarm to wake up, take a reading and write it down.