Apple to suspend Apple Watch Series 9, Ultra 2 sales in the US

Apple Watch Series 9
(Image credit: Future)

Apple will stop selling the Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 in the US from this week. The company says sales will cease from later this week following an ITC ruling amidst a patent dispute between Apple and Masimo, regarding its blood oxygen monitoring feature. 

9to5Mac reports the following statement from Apple:

A Presidential Review Period is in progress regarding an order from the U.S. International Trade Commission on a technical intellectual property dispute pertaining to Apple Watch devices containing the Blood Oxygen feature. While the review period will not end until December 25, Apple is preemptively taking steps to comply should the ruling stand. This includes pausing sales of the Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 from starting December 21, and from Apple retail locations after December 24.

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.

Should the order stand, Apple will continue to take all measures to return Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 to customers in the U.S. as soon as possible.

Imminent Apple Watch ban

As the statement notes, Apple is suspending sales pre-emptively from December 21 online, and December 24 in stores. However, the company clearly anticipates a legal challenge to the order which could see any potential ban overturned. Apple also clearly states that if the ban is upheld, it will, endeavor to create an Apple Watch that can be bought and sold in the U.S., possibly without the offending Blood Oxygen Feature. 

This is an unprecedented situation, with Apple pulling a flagship product from sale because of a legal challenge. Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 are the company's two best Apple Watch models for mainstream users and adventurers respectively. They were only released in September and both were exciting upgrades on the previous models. 

As 9to5 notes this ban does not impact outlets outside of Apple, so you'll still be able to buy an Apple Watch from the likes of Amazon or Best Buy for now, however, the ITC ruling would constitute a ban on imports which would eventually see supplies to third-party retailers dry up. 

Apple plans to appeal the ITC's final decision on December 26, once the Presidential Review Period is up. 

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Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.

Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9

  • Just_Me_D
    I have the utmost confidence this issue will be resolved fairly quickly.
  • Jeremy Kaplan
    Patent trolls gotta troll, I guess. Unfortunately, this sort of success encourages them to continue