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Why is Apple removing the blood oxygen app from Apple Watch Series 9 and Ultra 2 in US?

Apple is reportedly making modifications to its watches to comply with a legal ruling, ensuring that the specified features are temporarily removed to adhere to the ITC ban while addressing concerns related to patent infringement.

Written By: Vishal Upadhyay New Delhi Published on: January 16, 2024 12:52 IST
apple watch, apple watch series 9, apple watch sale in us, apple watch sale ban in us, tech news
Image Source : FILE Representational Image

Medical technology company Masimo has reported that Apple is making changes to certain Apple Watch models to comply with a court ruling. In a document filed with the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, Masimo mentioned that Apple is modifying the Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 to exclude the pulse oximetry functionality.

According to IANS, this adjustment comes as a response to a previous ruling by the US International Trade Commission (ITC), which ordered an import and sales ban on Apple watches with blood oxygen features. The ITC concluded that Apple had violated Masimo's pulse oximetry patents.

Temporary Removal for Compliance

Apple plans to temporarily remove the blood oxygen app from the affected models sold in the US. This move is seen as an effort to comply with the ITC order and navigate around the ban on watches with the blood oxygen feature.

Masimo's Response

Reportedly, Masimo expressed approval of Apple's action, considering it a positive step towards accountability. The company stated the importance of large corporations respecting the intellectual property rights of smaller firms and adhering to ITC orders when found infringing.

Impact on Users

Existing owners of the Apple watches are expected to retain access to the blood oxygen feature. Additionally, models sold in other countries are not anticipated to be affected by this change.

Ban History and Resumption

Last year, the ITC banned the sale of Apple watches in the US due to patent violations. However, Apple resumed selling the Watch Series 9 and Ultra 2 at some retail stores in the US after an appeals court temporarily halted the ban. 

Inputs from IANS 

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