HomeNewsAppleApple Watch Import Ban Looms as ITC Rules in Favor of Masimo

Apple Watch Import Ban Looms as ITC Rules in Favor of Masimo

The Apple Watch, a beloved accessory for many, may soon face import restrictions in the United States. This unexpected twist in the tale stems from a recent ruling by the International Trade Commission (ITC), which has declared that Apple is in breach of Masimo’s blood oxygen tracking patent. This article will delve into the details of this legal dispute and its potential implications.

Apple Watch: Understanding the Dispute

The ITC’s Ruling

The International Trade Commission, an independent federal agency, has made a critical decision that could spell trouble for Apple’s signature wearable. According to the ITC, Apple stands accused of infringing upon a patent owned by Masimo, a prominent player in the medical technology industry.

The Patented Technology

The patent at the heart of the controversy pertains to light-based pulse oximetry technology, specifically designed for blood oxygen monitoring on devices like the Apple Watch. This technology has been integral to Apple’s offerings, allowing users to track their blood oxygen levels easily.

Implications for Apple

The Ban Decision

As of now, the ITC’s decision has the potential to prevent Apple from importing Apple Watches into the United States. However, it’s important to note that this ban will take little effect. The President’s verdict is currently under review, and Apple retains the option to file an appeal.

The Biden Administration’s Role

The Biden administration will have a 60-day window to either reject or uphold the Apple Watch import ban. Historically, U.S. Presidents have rarely overruled such restrictions, making this a critical phase in the legal battle.

Perspectives of the Involved Parties

Apple’s Response

Apple, a tech giant known for innovation and innovation-driven lawsuits, has vehemently defended its product. According to a spokesman for Apple, “Masimo has wrongly attempted to use the ITC to keep a potentially lifesaving product from millions of U.S. consumers while making way for their watch that copies Apple.” Despite this setback, Apple remains determined to reverse the decision and continues to explore avenues for appeal.

Masimo’s Stand

Masimo CEO Joe Kiani, on the other hand, views the ITC’s decision as a significant win for his company. He believes it sends a powerful message that even the world’s largest company is not above the law.

Uncertainties Regarding Affected Models

It remains unclear which Apple Watch models will be impacted if the import ban is enforced. Masimo’s case centers around the Apple Watch 6, the first to integrate blood oxygen monitoring, alleging that it infringed on their patent.


The legal battle between Apple and Masimo over the alleged patent infringement on blood oxygen tracking technology has put the future of Apple Watches in the United States under uncertainty. With the Biden administration’s review pending, the tech world is holding its breath to see how this story unfolds.

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