Apple Pulls Some Apple Watch in the US Amid Patent Dispute

Hey, here’s the scoop: Apple’s making moves in the US and pulling the plug on some of its Apple Watch models. They’re saying goodbye to the Apple Watch Series 9 and the Apple Watch Ultra 2, starting this Thursday on Apple and in stores after December 24.

Trouble Brewing with Masimo

This decision is all because of a beef between Apple and a medical device company called Masimo. See, there’s this ongoing tiff about the blood oxygen feature. Apple’s been all about promoting its smartwatch as a lifesaver, which, let’s face it, has made it crazy popular. But this fight with Masimo is putting a wrench in that.

A while back, the US International Trade Commission said Apple was stepping on Masimo’s toes with their pulse oximeter patent, which measures blood-oxygen levels using light-based tech. President Biden’s got around 60 days to give the ruling a once-over before things could get serious with a ban.

Apple’s Preemptive Move

Apple’s not taking any chances. Even though the review’s not wrapping up until December 25, they’re already taking steps to follow the ruling if it sticks. But hey, Apple’s not happy about it. They’re exploring legal and technical options to keep the Apple Watch available.

They’re saying, “If things go south, we’re doing everything to get those Series 9 and Ultra 2 watches back in customers’ hands in the US real quick.” koin303

What Stays, What Goes

Here’s the deal: other models are safe to buy, but a ban could hit the Series 6 and later models, plus all versions of the Apple Watch Ultra that come in after the upcoming review period. Good news though, the Apple Watch SE isn’t affected.

Tech Talk: Series 9 Specs

The Series 9 dropped in September with some cool stuff. It’s got a custom S9 chip for faster action and lets you wave your hand to control the watch, thanks to a beefed-up neural engine.

Apple’s Stand and Next Steps

Apple’s not taking this lying down. They think the ITC’s got it wrong and they’re planning to push back, even taking things up to the Federal Circuit. coin303

Plus, they’re showing how a ban could mess with healthcare, research, and the folks using the watch health features like ECG and blood oxygen.

Masimo’s Take

Masimo’s CEO, Joe Kiani, thinks this sales halt is just another move in this patent showdown. He’s calling it a pressure tactic on Biden, and he’s open to a sit-down to sort this out.

A History of Clashes

This isn’t new—Apple and Masimo have been at it for a while. Last year, Apple fired back with lawsuits, saying Masimo copied Apple Watch features into their own smartwatch.

How It Might Hit Sales

Experts think Apple’s timing this pause just before Christmas might not hurt them too bad financially. They’re leaving the watches up for grabs in stores till the 24th, hoping to cash in on last-minute shoppers.

David McQueen, a big brain at ABI Research, figures Apple might still ride this out without a massive sales hit, especially if they can sell off the existing stock.

The Big Question Mark

The big mystery now is how long this showdown will drag on and when Apple might decide to settle up. But for now, it’s a wait-and-see game to figure out when these watches will be back in the game.