With wearables, the common method of gathering heart rate information is through a laser system that continuously scans your wrist for your heart rate, versus more traditional methods that involves strapping a sensor to your chest. However it seems that the technology might have been stolen, at least as far as Apple and Fitbit are concerned.
According to reports, it seems that both Apple and Fitbit are currently being sued by a company called Valencell. The company alleges that both Apple and Fitbit are currently using unauthorized technology in their wearables, namely the Apple Watch, Fitbit Charge HR, and the Fitbit Surge.
However this seems to be more than just a case of both companies unknowingly using a patented technology. In fact Valencell claims that Apple had initially attempted to reach some kind of licensing deal but had failed to do so. The company later claims that IP addresses belonging to Apple had even downloaded white papers regarding the technology from Valencell’s website.
Valencell even claims that they had provided Apple with technical samples that were used for testing and analysis, but states that Apple decided that it would be more economically advantageous to take the risk of infringing upon their patents rather than license it properly. Apple has yet to comment on the lawsuit, but safe to say that Valencell’s accusations are rather damning.