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Oura sues Circular, a rival of smart rings allegedly copying technology




Even smart rings are unaffected by patent wars. Wearable Note Oura has sued fledgling rival Circular for violating patents that cover both ring design and biometric data collection. Circular’s upcoming wearables allegedly copied Oura’s work by stuffing electronics into cavities and gathering information to generate an overall energy score.

Mr. Oura said he requested a cease and desist from Circular in January, about a year after the newcomer launched the crowdfunding campaign. Circular has taken on a lawyer to consider the patent accordingly.

Circular, of course, opposed the proceedings and characterized it as an attempt to curb competition. In his statement, a spokesperson told wearables that pursuing a monopoly “has never driven innovation.” Oura seems to want the smart ring market itself.

It’s unclear which side will win. The patents are broad and effectively cover many attempts to make smart rings, which the US Patent Office has approved. Circular may not only challenge its relevance to a particular finger-based technique, but may also need to challenge the patent itself in order to win the case in court.

Update 5/13/22 7:30 pm ET: “URA is embracing the creativity and innovation of medical technology, including our competitors,” an Oura spokeswoman emailed Engadget. “But what we can’t accept is a direct copy, because it doesn’t help the development of consumers or the industry. The proceedings filed against Circular are at least two URA patents. We are dealing with a deliberate infringement. “

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