Apple today filed a patent infringement lawsuit against AliveCor, a company that has developed the ECG “KardiaBand” designed for the Apple Watch, among other ECG-focused products. AliveCor and Apple are already in the midst of a legal battle following an ITC complaint and antitrust lawsuit that AliveCor filed last year
According to Apple, AliveCor’s product line has not been successful with customers, and the company’s “failures in the market” have led it to “opportunistic assertions of its patents against Apple.” Earlier this year, AliveCor submitted an International Trade Commission complaint against Apple in an attempt to get an import ban on the Apple Watch, and the judge ruled in AliveCor’s favor.
Apple says that while it is appealing the ruling, it is using this new patent infringement filing to “set the record straight as to who is the real pioneer,” putting a stop to AliveCor’s “rampant infringement that unlawfully appropriates Apple’s intellectual property.” From the filing:
Apple is the pioneering innovator, having researched, developed, and patented core, foundational technologies before AliveCor came into existence. AliveCor’s litigation campaign is nothing more than an attempt to siphon from the success of Apple technologies it did not invent, all the while selling products that rely on foundational ECG innovations that Apple patented years before AliveCor came to be.
The complaint cites several Apple patents related to the heart rate and ECG functionality in the Apple Watch, which Apple says AliveCor’s KardiaMobile, KardiaMobile Card, and Kardia app infringe on.
Apple claims that AliveCor’s patent infringements are causing Apple irreparable harm, with Apple aiming for a permanent injunction to stop further infringement, as well as damages and legal fees.
AliveCor first filed an antitrust suit against Apple back in May 2021, accusing Apple of “monopolistic conduct” for the launch of the ECG functionality in the Apple Watch. AliveCor claims that Apple saw the success of its KardiaBand and decided to “corner the market for heart rate analysis on Apple Watch.”
The company has also filed patent infringement lawsuits accusing Apple of coping AliveCor’s cardiological detection and analysis technology.
Apple’s full complaint against AliveCor can be read on Scribd.