Did Apple offer millions to a Masimo exec for his insight or for him to steal tech?

Did Apple offer millions to a Masimo exec for his insight or for him to steal tech?
Apple is infamous in the tech industry. The company has made some of the best phones ever made and some of the best smartwatches to hit the market. One must, however, ask at what cost does producing tech like the Apple Watch 6 come? And is it just money?

Some of you may be familiar with the company Masimo. It is a health-oriented company, which produces all sorts of trackers, including in the form of smartwatches. It is also one of the firms towards which Apple had shown interest to form a working relationship, back in 2013.

After some time, however, Apple changed its stance and stated that they were only interested in insight from one of Masimo’s chief medical officers. They offered to pay him for said expertise, but then in 2020, Masimo filed a lawsuit against Apple, accusing Apple of stealing trade secrets.

Wait, did Apple pay an exec to steal tech?

The tech in question is the O2 sensor on the Apple Watch 6. It is, in fact, quite an impressive piece of technology. We don’t typically go very in-depth about things like this, so to keep it short: it was a significant advancement in the realm of blood oxygen tracking. The O2 sensor had a total of ten patents, owned by Masimo, associated with it. And the court, ultimately, ruled out that Apple had infringed at least one of them.

In typical Cupertino fashion, there was a strike back in the form of an accusation: Masimo’s W1 Advanced Health Tracking Watch was labeled as an Apple Watch clone. Since then, the legal battle has waged on, with a final ruling expected in May of 2023.

The Wall Street Journal published a report with a detailed overview of a habit that Apple seems to have picked up on: to promise partnerships and then go back on its word, while seemingly releasing oddly similar tech. Hm…

An example from the report is related to the aforementioned Masimo chief medical officer — Michael O’Reilly. Apple allegedly promised him millions of dollars worth of shares, a job under its wing and for double the pay at that. Naturally, they agreed. But just before the deal was sealed, talks suddenly stopped.

Ever since then, Joe Kiani — founder of Masimo — claims that Apple has continuously attempted to hire Masimo employees. Apple, in defense, denies these claims. Mr. Kiani shared with the WSJ that the legal war has thus far cost Masimo $55 million, and his estimation is that it will reach $100 million before everything is settled.

Oh, and the 30 Masimo employees that Apple actually stole hired.

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