Masimo is making waves with its latest offering, the Masimo Freedom. If the name sounds familiar, it’s because Masimo is the company that stirred the waters by getting the Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 banned due to a patent infringement lawsuit. Now, they’re back with a vengeance, presenting a smartwatch that promises what Apple can’t deliver.
A Pivot to the Consumer Scene
Masimo, traditionally a medical tech giant, seems to be taking a leap into the consumer-friendly gadget market. While their previous wearable, the Masimo W1, leaned heavily towards health-centric features, the Masimo Freedom marks a shift towards a more generalized smartwatch audience.
The Masimo Freedom boasts a smart design with features like notifications, targeting a broader audience. However, it retains its health-focused roots, distinguishing itself from the Apple Watch. The prototype, showcased at CES 2024, revealed a round display with a unique navigation touchbar on the right side and a functional button for object selection—no Digital Crown or rotating bezel in sight.
Health Monitoring Superiority
Eugene Goldberg, Masimo’s president of consumer health, emphasized that the Freedom smartwatch aims to showcase the accuracy of their health-monitoring tech. The blood oxygen monitoring tech, claimed to be superior to competitors, factors in variables like motion, low perfusion, skin pigmentation, or compromised blood flow.
The Masimo Freedom goes beyond blood oxygen monitoring, offering a suite of health-tracking features, including hydration index, respiration rate, pulse rate variability, pulse rate, steps, and fall detection. With continuous monitoring every second, it could be a game-changer for older adults, providing real-time insights into vital signs.
The Road Ahead
While the Masimo Freedom is currently a prototype, slated for release later this year, its hefty price tag of $999 positions it as a niche product. The smartwatch features, according to The Verge, appear basic, and FDA approval for health features is pending. The legal battle with Apple adds another layer of intrigue to Masimo’s journey into the smartwatch market.
Masimo’s bold entry with the Freedom smartwatch challenges the status quo. As the industry eagerly anticipates its official release, only time will reveal if this health-centric device can carve its niche and rival the giants in the smartwatch arena.
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