Apple is facing a patent infringement lawsuit for allegedly stealing trade secrets and improperly using Masimo Corp., inventions related to health monitoring in its Apple Watch.
The lawsuit, filed by Masimo, patient-monitoring company, and spinoff company Cercacor Laboratories Inc., claim that Apple obtained secret information under the pretense of a working relationship.
Apple had told Masimo that it wanted to “understand more about Masimo’s technology to potentially integrate that technology into Apple products,” said Masimo.
Under a confidentiality agreement, the companies met, but soon after Apple began hiring key Masimo employees including, Michael O’Reilly, who was then Masimo’s chief medical officer and since became vice president of Apple’s health technology officer.
The next year, Apple hired Marcelo Lamego, who was Cercacor’s chief technology officer and a former Masimo scientist.
“Lamego had ‘unfettered access’ to confidential technical information and, shortly after starting work at Apple, began pursuing patent applications for things that he learned at the companies. Apple knew it was getting confidential information from the two men, the companies said,” wrote Bloomberg.
The companies allege in the lawsuit that Apple knew it was getting confidential information from the two men.
“Given what appeared to be a targeted effort to obtain information and expertise from Masimo and Cercacor, Masimo and Cercacor warned Apple about respecting their rights,” the companies said in the complaint.
Masimo and Cercacor are looking to add their engineers to seven patents and applications that were issued to Lamego, thus making the companies owners of those patents and applications assigned to Apple.
Apple is also facing allegations for allegedly stealing patented technology from an email developer and then erasing the man’s service from the App Store.
In addition, it has been accused of using another’s patented invention its Watch without paying.
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