US may ban Apple from importing the Apple Watch smart watch

By: Elena Shcherban | 28.10.2023, 17:16
US may ban Apple from importing the Apple Watch smart watch

Apple is engaged in a long-running court battle with Masimo, which accuses it of patent infringement. And Apple's position is bleak: it has already suffered major defeats in court.


The stumbling block is the blood oxygen level measurement feature, which appeared in the Apple Watch Series 6 in 2020 and is used in pretty much every new model after that (except the SE).

Back in 2013, Apple reportedly contacted Masimo to discuss a possible collaboration. Instead, Apple used those meetings to gain information and expertise, and to hire some Masimo employees ahead of the Apple Watch launch. Masimo now claims that Apple stole confidential information and is infringing on patents for some of the technology available in the Apple Watch.

The US International Trade Commission (ITC) seems to agree. It upheld a judge's January ruling that Apple had infringed Masimo's patents. The ITC can now ban sales of the Apple Watch smart watch in the US. However, it is unclear which models - only Apple Watch Series 6 (which is no longer sold officially) or all generations with the function of measuring oxygen levels in the blood.

But the ban won't go into effect immediately. Firstly, US President Joe Biden and his administration have 60 days to veto the decision (or not). Second, Apple will be able to appeal to the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

Source: Reuters