Masimo sues Apple to ban the Apple Watch Series 6 from the United States

Apple Watch Series 6 Hero
Apple Watch Series 6 Hero (Image credit: Apple)

What you need to know

  • Masimo has filed a patent-fringement complaint against Apple.
  • The company is attempting to block the import of the Apple Watch Series 6 into the U.S.

A company is attempting to prevent Apple from selling the Apple Watch Series 6 in the United States.

As reported by Bloomberg, Masimo Corp. has filed a patent-infringement compliant at the United States International Trade Commission that is attempting to stop Apple from being able to import its smartwatch.

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.

Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Tamlin Bason believes that the lawsuit could end with a settlement benefiting Masimo in the form of yearly payments from Apple.

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.Apple denies that it stole any trade secrets or infringed the patents in the earlier case. Company officials didn't immediately respond to queries seeking comment on the new case. The unit that includes sales of Apple Watch reported $30.6 billion in revenue in fiscal 2020.

Masimo's argument for keeping the Apple Watch Series 6 from customers in the United States is based on the fact that the blood oxygen sensor built into the watch is not yet to be used for medical purposes.

"Apple heavily markets that feature of the Series 6 to give the watch the appearance of a medical device," Masimo said in the filing. "Yet, hidden from the millions of purchasers of the Series 6, Apple warns in the fine print that the blood oxygen measurements should not be relied upon for medical purposes."

While the threat exists from the lawsuit, it is highly unlikely that the Apple Watch Series 6 will just disspear from store shelves in the United States. If you're paranoid and want to get one quickly, though, check out our list of the Best Apple Watch Series 6 deals.

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.