Nokia-Qualcomm Legal Battle on Hold

One aspect of the intellectual property fight between the two phone makers is stayed by a U.S. judge, but an accord is unlikely

The ongoing legal wrangling between Nokia and Qualcomm has hit the buffers after one investigation has been put on ice in the US.

The pair are locked in a prolonged legal battle over intellectual property after negotiations between them to renew a licensing deal set to expire in April broke down.

The litigation between the two is taking place both in the UK and the US. The latest twist to the saga stems from the decision by a judge presiding over the investigation to halt the action Qualcomm has initiated against Nokia with the US International Trade Commission.

The investigation, scheduled to begin next month, will now be stayed until further notice. Nokia is hopeful the suit will be dismissed before it comes to court.

A statement from the Finnish phone maker said: "Nokia is confident that it has not infringed any Qualcomm patents that are at issue in this investigation. Additionally, since Qualcomm filed its complaint, it has voluntarily withdrawn three of the six patents from the suit. The remaining three are all from the same patent family. Nokia believes the patent withdrawal reflects on the weakness of Qualcomm's case."

Qualcomm CEO said earlier this month the feuding twosome are unlikely to reach an accord without external intervention.

It's now estimated the legal bill for the wider mobile industry could be running into billions due to patent spats.