Apple Watch Sales Ban Opposition by the International Trade Commission

    In a recent development, the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) has formally opposed Apple’s motion to pause the sales ban on certain Apple Watch models. The decision comes in the wake of a patent dispute with medical tech company Masimo, which accused Apple of infringing on its patents related to blood oxygen sensing.

    The dispute began when Masimo accused Apple of stealing trade secrets and poaching employees to develop the blood oxygen sensing feature that debuted on the Watch Series 6 in 2020. As a result, the ITC banned sales of Apple Watch models from offering the feature. This ruling resulted in the Series 9, Ultra 2, and some refurbished Series 7 and Series 8 models being unavailable last month briefly until the ban was paused.

    apple watch sales ban

    Apple had appealed the decision in court and was granted a temporary stay, so the ban was paused and sales have resumed for now. However, the ITC has now formally opposed Apple’s motion for the ban to be paused for the duration of its appeal. The ITC lawyers stated that Apple’s arguments amount to little more than an indisputably adjudicated infringer requesting permission to continue infringing the asserted patents.

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    The court is still accepting “replies in support” until January 15, so the Apple Watch should remain available until later this week at a minimum.

    Apple is reportedly working on software changes to address the alleged patent infringement, but Masimo believes that the Apple Watch’s hardware design will have to change to become compliant.

    Last month, Masimo said it was open to settlement talks, but Apple had reportedly not expressed any interest at the time.

    This case highlights the ongoing challenges tech companies face in navigating complex patent landscapes. As the situation unfolds, it will be interesting to see how Apple navigates this legal hurdle and what impact it will have on the future of Watch sales.

    If you would like to read more about technology, feel free to check out our other articles here.

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