Apple granted temporary pause on Apple Watch ban after winning appeal

In a recent patent dispute between Apple and medical technology firm Masimo, a federal appeals court has granted Apple's request to temporarily pause a ban on some of its Apple smartwatches. The ban, issued by the U.S. International Trade Commission, prohibits the import and sale of the Apple Watch Series 9 and Ultra 2 due to alleged infringement on Masimo's patented blood oxygen sensor technology. Apple filed an emergency request with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit to halt the ban, which has been granted while Customs and Border Protection (CBP) determines whether Apple's redesigned watches violate Masimo's patent. CBP is expected to make a decision on January 12.

The ban went into effect on December 26 after the Biden administration chose not to veto the trade commission's decision. However, prior to the ban taking effect, Apple announced that it would halt sales of the affected smartwatches on its website and in its retail locations. It is currently unclear whether Apple will resume selling these watches while the court-ordered pause on the ban is in effect.

Versions of the Apple Watch that do not contain the blood oxygen sensor are unaffected by the patent dispute and can continue to be sold. The watches in question are still available through other retailers like Amazon, Best Buy, and Walmart.

This is not the first time Apple has faced import bans on its products due to patent disputes. In 2013, the Obama administration vetoed an import ban on Apple's iPhones and iPads that arose from a patent dispute with Samsung.

The ongoing legal battle between Apple and Masimo includes a mistrial in a California federal court and a separate patent infringement lawsuit filed by Apple against Masimo in a Delaware federal court. Masimo has not commented on the recent ruling, and Apple has yet to respond to requests for comment.


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