Three heart rate measuring patents used in suit against Apple invalidated

Posted:
in Apple Watch edited December 2022
Apple got handed a big win on Tuesday, after the US Patent Trial and Appeal Board invalidated three of AliveCor's patents that a court ruled Apple had violated.




The patents in question are part of AliveCor's initial lawsuit against Apple, levied against the Cupertino tech giant in 2020.

In 2021, AliveCor took their case to the International Trade Commission, hoping to place an import ban on the Apple Watch. An ITC judge ITC judge issued an initial finding in AliveCor's favor.

Once invalidated and all appeals are exhausted, a party cannot allege infringement on the patent. This is likely to factor into the ITC's decision regarding a potential import ban on the the Apple Watch

Apple has issued a statement to AppleInsider regarding the ruling.

"We appreciate the Patent Trial and Appeal Board's careful consideration of these patents, which were found to be invalid," Apple said to us. "Apple's teams work tirelessly to create products and services that empower users, including the industry-leading health, wellness and safety features we independently developed and incorporated into Apple Watch. Today's decision confirms that the patents AliveCor asserted in the ITC against Apple are invalid."

The two companies have long battled over ECG technologies, which are used in both the Apple Watch and KardiaBand. Each have alleged patent infringement against the other.

In May 2021, AlivCor filed an antitrust suit against Apple, alleging that the company had engaged in anticompetitive behavior by shutting down a previously approved AliveCor app.

On December 2, Apple filed another patent infringement lawsuit against AliveCor, arguing that the company infringed upon four of Apple's patents.

But, as with nearly everything else in a patent matter, there are appeal options. The Patent Trial and Appeal Board ruling on Tuesday can be heard by the US Courts of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. An appeal by Alivecor seems likely.

Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 5
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 10,349member
    Tell me when Apple has EVER won one of these patent lawsuits.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 5
    jdwjdw Posts: 1,168member
    Excellent news.  Down with patent troll, AlivCor!
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 5
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 33,335member
    lkrupp said:
    Tell me when Apple has EVER won one of these patent lawsuits.
    They have over the years, numerous times. I’m not going to search for all of that, but it’s been reported here, and elsewhere.
    muthuk_vanalingamwatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 5
    jdw said:
    Excellent news.  Down with patent troll, AlivCor!
    How are they a troll? They produce products to their own designs. They even demoed a heart rate sensor for the iPhone back in 2010.

    Usually a patent troll just owns patents and sues. They may not be the original patent holder and typically don't produce anything.

    I tried to find the posting on the PTAB site without any luck. The article I posted in the other comments yesterday didn't link to it. That makes it hard to figure why the patents were invalidated as un-patentable. It could have been "same as before but now on a computer" which isn't valid or for some other reason like prior art.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 5
    davidwdavidw Posts: 1,742member
    mknelson said:
    jdw said:
    Excellent news.  Down with patent troll, AlivCor!
    How are they a troll? They produce products to their own designs. They even demoed a heart rate sensor for the iPhone back in 2010.

    Usually a patent troll just owns patents and sues. They may not be the original patent holder and typically don't produce anything.

    I tried to find the posting on the PTAB site without any luck. The article I posted in the other comments yesterday didn't link to it. That makes it hard to figure why the patents were invalidated as un-patentable. It could have been "same as before but now on a computer" which isn't valid or for some other reason like prior art.
    In a nutshell, (from just the two articles linked below), it appears that Apple was able to show that the technology used in the Apple Watch 4 was developed by Apple own developmental research as early as 2008, two years before AliveCor was founded. But AliveCor was suing Apple stating that starting with the Apple Watch 4, Apple was infringing on their patents. It seems that Apple might not have patented their research findings back then because they thought it was "obvious". And the patent board agreed and deem that the AliveCor patents, are not patentable. 

    https://www.reuters.com/legal/litigation/apple-sues-alivecor-over-patents-apple-watch-import-ban-deadline-looms-2022-12-05/

    >Apple's new lawsuit said AliveCor's devices copied Apple advancements related to heart-rate sensors in electronic devices, health-data aggregation, and other personal-health innovations. Apple said it developed its technology as early as 2008, two years before AliveCor was founded.<

    https://www.mobihealthnews.com/news/apple-secures-patent-win-alivecor-heart-monitoring-tech-case

    >The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office's Patent Trial and Appeal Board determined on Tuesday that three AliveCor patents regarding the detection of heart conditions like cardiac arrhythmias were not patentable. The board found the patents were "obvious" following earlier research and technology advancements.< 
    edited December 2022
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