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Apple may remove the Blood Oxygen app from its Series 9 and Ultra 2 watches to get around patent dispute

By Kenny Yeo - on 16 Jan 2024, 10:04am

Apple may remove the Blood Oxygen app from its Series 9 and Ultra 2 watches to get around patent dispute

(Image source: Apple)

According to a filing, Apple might be preparing to sell Apple Watch models that "do not contain pulse oximetry functionality" in the US to sidestep the import and sales ban on its watches in the US.

If you don't already know, the US International Trade Commission (ITC) decided to ban the sales of the Apple Watch Series 9 and Ultra 2 in the US after it found that Apple had fringed the pulse-oximetry technology patents of medical technology company Masimo.

The ban was later paused by the US Court of Appeals, but reports say the ban could resume as early as this month, which is likely the impetus behind this desperate move.

At the time of writing, blood oxygen level is still marketed as a feature of the Apple Watch Series and Ultra 2 in the US. However, Mark Gurman from Bloomberg, said that Apple has already begun shipping these modified watches. Apple, unsurprisingly, did not offer a comment.

That said, this move is likely just a stopgap measure as Apple works on a software update that would adjust the Blood Oxygen app's algorithms and avoid using Masimo's patented technology.

Also, this move is unlikely to affect the Apple Watch Series 9 and Ultra 2 sold in countries outside of the US since the ban doesn't apply outside of the US.

Source: MacRumors, Bloomberg

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