Apple Watch Series 9, Ultra 2 to be unavailable at US retail stores post Christmas

Apple has halted sale of its Watch Series 9 and Ultra 2 sales at its retail stores in the US and when Apple Stores reopen after Christmas, these two watches will not be available for purchase.

Apple pulled its latest flagship smartwatches due to an import ban imposed by the US International Trade Commission (ITC) over a patent dispute with medical device maker Masimo.

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Following the removal of the Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 from Apple’s online store last week, the two devices are also no longer available at its physical locations.

“When Apple Stores reopen on December 26, the Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 will not be available to purchase,” reports 9to5Mac.

According to reports, Apple Stores will now promote Watch SE, which remains available because it lacks the blood oxygen sensor.

The ITC ruled in October that the blood oxygen sensor in the Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 infringes on two Masimo patents.

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Following the ITC decision, the case was sent to the Joe Biden administration for a 60-day Presidential Review Period but he has so far chosen not to act.”The Presidential Review Period officially ends after December 25, so it is still possible that President Biden will choose to intervene and veto the ITC decision at the last minute,” according to the report.

Apple has said that it will “continue to take all measures to return Apple Watch Series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 to customers in the US as soon as possible.”

Apple will file an appeal of the ITC’s final decision with the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit on December 26.

The long-running patent dispute between Apple and medical technology company Masimo is around the Watch’s blood oxygen sensor (SpO2 sensor) technology.