Online Sales of Watch Series 9 and Ultra 2 by Apple are Suspended

Apple has officially removed the Watch Series 9 from its online shop due to an ongoing patent dispute. The surprise move came amidst a battle with health tech company Masimo over the use of an optical image sensor in the smartwatch to monitor heart rate.

The entry-level Apple Watch SE is still available for purchase, but the Watch Series 9 and the Apple Watch Ultra 2 are not. Buyers can still get their hands on the Series 9 through other online sources like Amazon, which is still offering pre-Christmas delivery in some areas. The wearable will also be available at brick and mortar Apple Store locations until Christmas Eve.

Apple’s patent battle with Masimo has been ongoing for the past few years, with the company disagreeing with the order to pause Watch Series 9 sales. The dispute centers around the use of the Blood Oxygen feature in Apple Watch devices and the alleged poaching of key talent from Masimo by Apple.

In a statement provided to TechCrunch earlier this week, the company noted that it would continue to fight the decisions, saying, “Apple’s teams work tirelessly to create products and services that empower users with industry-leading health, wellness, and safety features. Apple strongly disagrees with the order and is pursuing a range of legal and technical options to ensure that Apple Watch is available to customers.”

Apple appears to be taking preemptive steps to comply with the ruling, including pausing sales of the affected smartwatches from December 21 and from Apple retail locations after December 24. However, the company has noted that it will continue to take measures to return the affected products to customers in the U.S. as soon as possible, should the order stand.

The decision to halt sales of the Watch Series 9 during the holiday season could pose a challenge for Apple, as this is the time when people are most likely to purchase high-demand products. Some customers may find themselves with delayed deliveries and unwrapping a raincheck this year due to the product’s unavailability.

Despite the setbacks, Apple is committed to ensuring that its watch products are available to customers and is exploring various legal and technical options to address the ongoing patent dispute. The company’s efforts to empower users with industry-leading health, wellness, and safety features remain central to its mission, and it aims to resolve the issues with the affected smartwatches as soon as possible.


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