Apple to remove blood oxygen feature from some watches after US ban

Amid its patent dispute with Masimo, Apple is now selling its latest smartwatches by removing the ability to measure blood oxygen levels in the United States for the Series 9 and Ultra 2.

“The ability to measure blood oxygen is no longer available on Apple Watch units sold by Apple in the United States beginning January 18, 2024. These are indicated with part numbers ending in LW/A” Apple now states on its Series 9 and Ultra 2 watch page in the United States. The Blood Oxygen feature icon is still visible to users of these smartwatches, but when opening it, the devices will notify users that “the Blood Oxygen app is no longer available. Learn more in the Health app on your iPhone,” according to Bloomberg News.

You may still use the blood oxygen measuring feature if you purchased your Apple Watch before the current stock. Furthermore, units in international markets will retain this feature, as the patent issue is not applicable there. This implies that existing users who were concerned about losing this feature in a future software update can breathe easily.

The sudden change is the result of a federal court decision ruling that Apple may no longer stay the ban on its smartwatches as long as it is in active dispute with Masimo over the blood oxygen sensor technology.

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