Do you know, Cardiologist is Suing Apple for Violating His Patent?
Dr. Joseph Wiesel was granted the patent in 2006 for “photoplethysmography”, which is the exact same technique used by the Apple Watch to detect atrial fibrillation. The cardiologist from New York has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against the lifesaving Apple Watch feature that detected if the wearer has an irregular heartbeat rate. The doctor has demanded royalties, legal fees, and recovery of all past damages, and claims that Apple are wilfully violating his patent surrounding the technology which is used in Apple Watch to detect atrial fibrillation (AFib).
The patent which was named, ‘Method of and apparatus for detecting atrial fibrillation’, by Dr Wiesel in 2006 which describes the method that uses a cuff Stapp around an appendage such as an arm or inflated above the systolic blood pressure.
‘ The patent is not specifically related to smartwatches but rather the method to detect irregularities in heartbeat rate is quite clearly the same. Apple Watches are capable of detecting the heart rate of their users, a feature that has helped doctors and people in general on numerous occasions. All the Smart wearables use sensors to perform photoplethysmography, which gives the device all the information about the blood flow.
If the option has been enabled, the Heart rate can also be notified to the user if it slips to an irregular rate. Apple promotes this as one of the main features of its watch. The business segment that includes the Apple Watch, Apple TV and Beats headphones is the company’s fastest-growing category and is presently generating more than ₹1.71 lakh crore in sales of the smartwatch in the fiscal year that ended in September.
Apparently, Wiesel had used a technique called photoplethysmography, and this method also uses green light and sensors to detect abnormal heartbeat rates. Wiesel had also briefed that, he had notified Apple about his patent in September 2017, right after the launch of the Apple Watch Series 3. But after getting a now significant response from Apple’s side he was forced to go to court.
The lawsuit also claims that the company has refused to sit down and negotiate with Dr. Wiesel, even after he had presented “detailed claim charts” which showed how the Apple Watch infringes his patent. He also claims that his patent is a critical feature of apple wearable devices. Apple is yet to respond to the cardiologist’s lawsuit, so it still remains unknown how the company would react to the allegations which have been put on them by Wiesel. But with Apple’s long listed infringement tussles, it is safe to say Apple will find a way around this allegation as well.