A federal appeals court granted Apple’s request to temporarily pause a federal trade commission’s ban on some of its Apple smartwatches amid an ongoing patent dispute with medical technology firm Masimo.
Apple on Tuesday filed an emergency request with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit to halt the ban, which bars the import and sale of the Apple Watch Series 9 and Ultra 2 because of the U.S. International Trade Commission’s decision that the smartwatches infringed on Masimo’s patented blood oxygen sensor technology. Apple began including pulse oximeters in smartwatches beginning with its Series 6 model in 2020.
The appellate court granted Apple’s request to pause the ban’s implementation while Customs and Border Protection (CBP) determines whether Apple’s redesigned watches violate Masimo’s patent. CBP is expected to make its decision on Jan. 12.
The ban on Apple Watches determined to have violated Masimo’s patents took effect on Dec. 26 after the Biden administration declined to veto the trade commission’s decision.
Before the ban took effect, Apple preemptively took steps toward compliance. It announced on Dec. 18 that it would halt sales of the Series 9 and Ultra 2 smartwatches on its website beginning on Dec. 21, while the company’s retail locations were to stop selling those watches after Dec. 24.
The watches in question were still available as of Tuesday through some other retailers like Amazon, Best Buy and Walmart, according to a report by Reuters.
Previously sold Apple Watches and those sold overseas were unaffected by the ban, and it’s currently unclear whether Apple is planning to sell the smartwatches at the center of the legal controversy while the court-ordered pause on the ban’s implementation is in effect.
FOX Business reached out to Apple and Masimo for comment.
Reuters contributed to this report.
This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.