Apple will stop selling these watches as of Thursday, December 21st. Why the ban? In October the US International Trade Commission (ITC) agreed that Apple had infringed two of Masimo’s blood oxygen patents. This decision was sent to the Biden Administration for the Presidential Reiew Period, which expires on December 25.
In the meantime Apple made the announcement to comply with ITC and will enforce the ban.
The Apple Watch SE 2 is not facing the ban since it doesn’t have the blood oxygen feature. If the Biden administration complies with the veto, Apple will then appeal the ITC decision in the US court. They will file an appeal on December 26.
Apple spokesperson Nikki Rothberg says it strongly disagrees with the order and is pursuing a range of legal and technical options to ensure that Apple Watch is available to customers.
The ITC ban will only affect Apple so the watches will continue to sell on retailers like Amazon and Best Buy and it will still be available in other countries.
The ban is the result of a dispute between Apple and medical tech company Masimo. Masimo sued Apple in 2021. The company alleged that Apple had infringed on one of its patents related to light-based oxygen monitoring. Aside from the appeal to the United States courts, Apple can put its watch back on the market by deactivating the blood oxygen feature.
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