Apple Readies Apple Watch Series 9 / Ultra 2 Blood Oxygen Functionality Removal To Skirt Ban
Apple is reportedly planning to remove the blood oxygen sensing technology from the Apple Watch Series 9 in a move that will prevent it from being banned in the United States.
The move was reported by 9to5Mac on the back of a statement by Masimo, the company whose medical sensing technology patent Apple is accused of infringing upon.
Apple was thought to be working on a software change that would allow the blood oxygen monitor to remain functional while bypassing the technology in Masimo’s patent. However, that now seems not to be the case and Apple will instead choose to remove the functionality altogether. This will also affect the Apple Watch Ultra 2, but will only apply to devices sold in the United States.
We’re waiting on more details from Apple on this situation. In the interim, what this means is that Apple can keep selling the Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2, but those devices will no longer “contain pulse oximetry features.” This applies only in the United States.
The court is expected to rule today on whether or not to stay the Apple Watch ban that is currently paused, a ban which saw the latest Apple Watches removed from sale at Apple Stores briefly over the Christmas period. Apple wants the ban stayed throughout the appeal process, however.
What happens next remains to be seen but we can expect to learn more in the coming hours and days.