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U.S. Court of Appeals Allows Apple to Continue Selling Apple Watches Amidst Patent Dispute

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Zara Nwosu
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U.S. Court of Appeals Allows Apple to Continue Selling Apple Watches Amidst Patent Dispute

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The U.S. Court of Appeals has granted Apple's request to continue selling its Apple Watches while the court reviews an import ban, marking a significant victory for the multinational technology company. This pivotal decision allows Apple to maintain its product sales without disruption while it navigates legal challenges. The outcome of the court review will have profound implications for Apple's business operations and its market presence.

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Temporary Pause on Import Ban

According to a report by Reuters, the U.S. Court of Appeals has temporarily paused a government commission's import ban on Apple's smartwatches. This move allows the company to resume sales of its flagship smartwatches. The import ban was imposed in a patent dispute over Apple's medical monitoring technology. Masimo, a California-based company, accused Apple of infringing its patents and stealing its pulse oximetry technology. However, the ban did not affect the Apple Watch SE, a less-expensive model without a pulse oximeter. Apple's wearables, home and accessory business, which includes the Apple Watch and other products, raked in $8.28 billion in revenue during the third quarter of 2023.

Apple's Legal Battle

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As per a report by NPR, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has temporarily halted an import ban on Apple's newest smartwatches as Apple appeals a decision by the U.S. International Trade Commission. The decision found that some Apple Watches infringed on the patents of a blood oxygen sensor made by Masimo. Apple has since pulled the Series 9 and Ultra 2 versions from store shelves and is taking measures to return them to customers. The appeals court stay is seen as an advantage for Apple. The company is now working on a software redesign to potentially get the products back on the market. Masimo has claimed that Apple poached its employees to illegally duplicate its technology, a claim that Apple vehemently denies.

Temporary Block on Import Ban

CNN reported that a federal appeals court has temporarily blocked an import ban on Apple's latest smartwatches. This allows the company to resume sales of the affected models. The ban was the result of a patent dispute with medical device maker Masimo, which holds a patent for pulse oximeter technology. The White House declined to overturn the ban, and Apple filed an emergency appeal motion. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has stayed the exclusion order, allowing Apple to continue selling its top-tier smartwatches while it challenges the ITC decision in court.

Appeal Against the Ban

As per a report by Arstechnica, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has paused the ban on patent-infringing Apple Watch imports while it considers Apple's argument. The ban was imposed after the International Trade Commission found that Apple had infringed on patents held by Masimo, a medical device manufacturer. Apple has pulled the affected watches from sale and is taking measures to return them to customers in the U.S. as soon as possible. The Biden administration chose not to interfere with the ban, unlike in a previous patent dispute between Apple and Samsung. Apple has asked for the ban to be paused until US Customs and Border Protection decides whether redesigned Apple Watches no longer infringe on Masimo's patents.

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