Apple Watches Back on Sale After CAFC Grants Interim Stay of ITC Order

“Ultimately, the ALJ’s ruling—which the Commission adopted—rested on improper speculation and ‘circumstantial evidence.” – Apple emergency motion

apple watchesYesterday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) stayed the International Trade Commission’s (ITC’s) October 26 Limited Exclusion Order (LEO) against certain Apple Watches that the ITC found infringed on two Masimo patents that covered technology related to reading blood-oxygen levels.

The CAFC does not appear to have published the order on its public website but it is widely available online.

On December 18, Apple announced that it would halt sales of the infringing watches as a matter of “preemptively taking steps to comply should the ruling stand.” President Biden, who delegated his authority to veto the ban to U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai, declined to veto the Commission’s order on Tuesday, December 26, making the ITC determination final. Apple then filed an emergency motion for immediate interim stay of the order pending its appeal to the CAFC. The ITC then requested an extension to respond from January 5, 2024 to January 10.

The CAFC granted the stay as well as the Commission’s request for an extension, meaning the pulled Apple watches will go back on the market beginning today.

Apple said in statements to the press that it strongly disagrees with the ITC’s determination and plans to continue fighting.

In Masimo’s complaint filed with the ITC on June 29, 2021, the company claimed that Apple first met with Masimo in 2013 about integrating Masimo’s technology into the Apple Watch and subsequently “began hiring Masimo employees, starting with Masimo’s Chief Medical Officer. In the Fall of 2020, Apple introduced the Series 6, manufactured in Asia.” The sale and importation of the devices infringed Masimo’s patents as well as incorporated Masimo’s trade secrets, which the parties are litigating separately, according to the complaint.

Further, Masimo argued banning the Apple Watch would not harm public health or welfare because the Apple Watch blood oxygen measurements are actually not reliable and “[s]ome have even observed that the inaccurate physiological measurements of the Series 6 watch endanger public health.”

Masimo has released its own wearable device, the Masimo W1™, which it says is “the first wearable device on the market to provide consumers with accurate, continuous health data, including oxygen level, hydration index, and pulse, heart, and respiration rates.”

In its emergency motion this week, Apple claimed the ITC’s decision “includes multiple errors and will accordingly likely be reversed on appeal.” The motion continued:

“Ultimately, the ALJ’s ruling—which the Commission adopted—rested on improper speculation and ‘circumstantial evidence’ that at least one of the dozens of devices that Masimo attempted to claim as the Masimo Watch existed before the operative complaint was filed.”

Apple will have until January 15, 2024, to file any reply to the ITC’s response.

Image Source: Deposit Photos
Author: Kesu01
Image ID: 76639843 


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Join the Discussion

2 comments so far.

  • [Avatar for Anon]
    December 29, 2023 10:37 am

    Saw a connection between President Biden and the owner of Masimo.

    There be big dogs here.

  • [Avatar for Pro Say]
    Pro Say
    December 28, 2023 12:16 pm

    The CAFC Big Tech lap dogs just gotta keep on lappin’.

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