The Apple Watch Series 8 affected by ITC import ban
Apple has removed the Apple Watch 9 and Ultra 2 from its online store due to the International Trade Commission’s (ITC) import ban. This ban also affects service replacements for older Apple Watch models with a blood oxygen sensor. The ban will be effective from December 25, and Apple is complying by taking the devices off its online store and physical US stores.
Third-party retailers can still sell the available inventory of these devices until it runs out. However, Apple is also stopping the replacement of out-of-warranty Apple Watch models with the blood oxygen feature covered by the patents in the ITC ruling, affecting the Apple Watch Series 6, 7, 8, and Ultra.
The company has instructed employees to inform customers needing a replacement for affected watches that they will be contacted once hardware parts are allowed again. This decision comes after the ITC ruled in favor of Masimo, a medical technology company that claimed Apple’s blood oxygen sensor technology infringes on its patents.
While the White House has not taken any action on the ITC’s ruling, Apple is working on a software update to address the issue. The ban does not affect the Apple Watch SE, and Series 9 and Ultra 2 purchased before December 25 and within the one-year warranty period can still be serviced or repaired.