Apple Watch Sales Ban Reinstated in U.S. Effective Tomorrow

Apple's motion to stay an Apple Watch sales ban for the duration of its appeal was denied today by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, according to a court document viewed by MacRumors. Apple's interim stay will be lifted as of January 18 at 2 p.m. Pacific Time, the filing indicates, meaning the sales ban will be reinstated tomorrow.

Apple Watch Series 9
The order means that Apple will once again no longer be able to sell Apple Watch models with blood oxygen sensing in the U.S., including the Series 9 and Ultra 2. The ban first began last month, but it was quickly paused after Apple received an interim stay.

The U.S. International Trade Commission last year ordered the import and sales ban after ruling that Apple violated Masimo's pulse oximetry patents with the Apple Watch's blood oxygen sensing feature, first introduced on the Series 6 model in 2020. Masimo has accused Apple of stealing trade secrets and poaching employees.

Apple will likely sell modified Apple Watch Series 9 and Ultra 2 models without the Blood Oxygen app in the U.S. to sidestep the sales ban, while it continues to appeal.

"Apple's claim that its redesigned watch does not contain pulse oximetry is a positive step toward accountability," a Masimo spokesperson told MacRumors. "It is especially important that one of the world's largest and most powerful companies respects the intellectual property rights of smaller companies and complies with ITC orders when it is caught infringing."

As a longer-term measure, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman recently reported that Apple is preparing a software update that would adjust the Blood Oxygen app's algorithms, in an attempt to avoid Masimo's patented technology. It's unclear if this effort will be successful, and the legal battle between Apple and Masimo is likely far from over.

Update: In a press release, Masimo CEO Joe Kiani shared the following statement in response to Apple's motion for stay being denied.

"The Federal Circuit's decision to lift the temporary stay is a victory for the integrity of the American patent system and the safety of people relying on pulse oximetry," said Kiani. "It affirms that even the largest and most powerful companies must respect the intellectual rights of American inventors and must deal with the consequences when they are caught infringing others' patents."

Masimo said it previously released a study showing that the Apple Watch's blood oxygen sensing feature "missed over 90% of potentially life-threatening events," while touting the effectiveness of its own Masimo W1 health watch.

Related Roundup: Apple Watch Series 9
Buyer's Guide: Apple Watch (Neutral)

Top Rated Comments

Spaceboi Scaphandre Avatar
6 weeks ago
So what's it gonna be Apple? Are you gonna actually pay Masimo? Or are you actually gonna sell your customers a gimped Apple Watch?
Score: 32 Votes (Like | Disagree)
truthsteve Avatar
6 weeks ago
customers: "YEAH, **** APPLE, MAKE THEM PAY"

also customers: "Why are we paying $100 more for Series 10 with new Blood Oxygen implementation?"
Score: 21 Votes (Like | Disagree)
DMG35 Avatar
6 weeks ago
Looks like Apple either needs to disable the Blood Oxygen sensor or pay Masimo for their patent.
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
sw1tcher Avatar
6 weeks ago

This assumes, of course, that Masimo is being reasonable in its ask. The device my doctor uses can be bought on Amazon for $12. The rumor I heard was that Masimo is asking $100/watch.
What is a reasonable asking price anyways? Reasonable is somewhat subjective.

What if Masimo were to ask $200? Apple seems to think that's a "reasonable" price to charge us to upgrade from 8GB memory to 16GB on their Macs. ?
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
macduke Avatar
6 weeks ago
Apple really needs to get their crap together.
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Sigvard Avatar
6 weeks ago
I'm hoping that they don't disable the feature on sold devices. It would be an instant return of my AWU2 if so, not that I need that feature but more for the principle.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

Beyond iPhone 13 Better Blue Face ID Single Camera Hole

Six Reasons to Wait for Next Year's iPhone 17

Thursday February 22, 2024 4:20 am PST by
Apple's iPhone development roadmap runs several years into the future and the company is continually working with suppliers on several successive iPhone models concurrently, which is why we sometimes get rumored feature leaks so far ahead of launch. The iPhone 17 series is no different, and already we have some idea of what to expect from Apple's 2025 smartphone lineup. If you plan to skip...
iPhone Notch

Apple Explored These Notch and Dynamic Island Designs for iPhones

Friday February 23, 2024 2:05 pm PST by
With the iPhone 14 Pro models in 2022, Apple introduced the Dynamic Island, which can morph and expand to display system alerts, sports scores, and a variety of other information. The feature makes the space surrounding the front camera and Face ID sensors useful compared to the notch on older iPhone models. Apple explored a variety of ideas for the iPhone's notch area over the years before...
General Apps Messages

iOS 17.4 to Add This 'Groundbreaking' New Messaging Feature

Friday February 23, 2024 5:05 am PST by
With iOS 17.4, set to arrive in March 2024, Apple is bringing a new cryptographic security feature to iMessage called PQ3. This "groundbreaking" and "state-of-the-art" protocol provides "extensive defenses against even highly sophisticated quantum attacks," according to Apple. Let's break down what that means. Apple's iMessage service already supports end-to-end encryption, but security...
cracked glass vision pro

Handful of Apple Vision Pro Units Develop Identical Crack in Cover Glass

Friday February 23, 2024 4:46 am PST by
A small number of Apple Vision Pro owners have claimed that their headsets developed a hairline crack down the middle of the front cover glass, despite having never been dropped or mishandled. Photo of hairline crack in Vision Pro front glass (credit: Reddit user Inphenite) The first report was posted in the subreddit /r/VisionPro about 18 days ago, and several more have appeared in the last...
New Macs iPads iOS 17 4

What to Expect at Potential Apple Event in March: iPads, Macs, and More

Friday February 23, 2024 8:35 am PST by
Apple often holds its first media event of the year in March, so the company could be just weeks away from announcing new products. Below, we have outlined what to expect from a potential Apple Event this March. Past Apple Events in March Apple has held five events in March since 2015:Monday, March 9, 2015 Monday, March 21, 2016 Tuesday, March 27, 2018 Monday, March 25, 2019 Tuesday,...
iOS 17

When Will Apple Release iOS 17.4 for iPhones?

Friday February 23, 2024 11:56 am PST by
Apple has been beta testing iOS 17.4 for nearly a month now. Below, we explain when the update is likely to be released to all users. In its press release announcing major App Store changes in the EU, which were implemented in response to new regulations under the EU's Digital Markets Act, Apple confirmed that iOS 17.4 will be released at some point in March:Developers can learn about these...
Next Generation CarPlay Porsche 1

Apple Launching Next-Generation CarPlay This Year With These New Features

Wednesday February 21, 2024 2:03 pm PST by
Apple recently updated its website to confirm that the first vehicle models with next-generation CarPlay support will debut "in 2024." This wording is shown on Apple's regional websites for the U.S., Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and many other countries. The iOS 17.4 beta includes code-level references to eight new CarPlay apps:Auto Settings: This app will let you manage paired iPhones...