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A patent Litigation Forces Apple to Suspend The Sale of Two Models of Its Smart Watch

The technological one, which accounts for almost a third of the global sales volume of these devices, withdraws the Apple Watch Series 9 and Ultra 2 from the US market until the dispute is resolved

In the middle of the Christmas campaign, in which these articles have been among the most demanded in recent years, Apple has announced Monday that it will suspend the sale in the United States of two of its smart watch models until a dispute over the patent of one of its functions is resolved, the one that measures oxygen in the blood. Apple Watch’s turnover represents nearly $ 20 billion of the company’s $ 383.29 billion in annual sales. Apple is the largest seller of smart watches of the world, with almost a third of the global sales volume.

Starting this Thursday on its website, and after Christmas Eve in its physical stores in the USA, the models cannot be purchased Apple Watch Series 9, the latest, and Apple Watch Ultra 2. The decision to withdraw, at least temporarily, one of its most popular products is due to a fierce dispute with medical device manufacturer Masimo about its blood oxygen function. Apple has marketed its smart watch as a life-saving device, an advertisement that has helped make it the best-selling new generation watch in the world.

Other models will continue for sale, but the import ban would affect the Apple Watch Series 6 and later, and to all imported Apple Watch Ultra models after the end of an upcoming review period. However, it will not affect sales of the Apple Watch SE, according to Apple. Series 9 features a custom S9 chip for faster constant processing and allows hand gestures to control the clock, thanks in part to an improved neural engine that processes sensor data and machine learning.

The litigation threatens to become one of the fiercest in relation to a patent. Apple’s decision comes after the International Trade Commission (ITC) ruled in October that several brand watches infringed Masimo patents, a medical technology company from Irvine (California). At trial, Masimo detailed how Apple hunted sneaky to its top executives and more than a dozen employees, and subsequently, launched a watch with pulse oximetry functions – which measures the percentage of oxygen that red blood cells carry – patented by Masimo.

To avoid a total sales ban, Apple had two months to reach an agreement with Masimo and obtain a license for its technology, or he could appeal to the Administration of President Joe Biden to revoke the sentence, for which he would have 60 days before the final ban came into force. “ Although the review period will not end until December 25, Apple is taking preventive measures to serve the sentence if ” is maintained, The company has said in a statement announcing the precautionary suspension.

“ Apple totally disagrees with the [Commerce Commission] order and is evaluating a number of legal and technical options to ensure that Apple Watch is available to customers”. The apple company has added that, if the order is maintained, “ will continue to take all steps to return the Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 to customers in the US as soon as possible ”, he added, referring to his recourse to the Biden Administration.

However, Joe Kiani, CEO of Masimo, has stated in an interview that Apple has not entered into negotiations to obtain the license. Instead, he noted that Apple had appealed to President Biden to veto the ITC ruling. Kiani claimed to have found out because the Administration contacted him about Apple’s request.

Source: El Pais