Judge Haldane Mayer on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit halted an import ban on mobile phones by Qualcomm Inc. yesterday, a rare legal victory in a long-standing patent dispute with rival Broadcom Corp. The lifting of the ban was requested by several mobile phone manufacturers and AT&T Inc.'s wireless division who argued that since Broadcom only filed its complaint against Qualcomm, the ITC did not have the authority to block imports by companies other than Qualcomm.
The judge agreed with the appealing companies and stayed the ITC's order pending their appeal. The stay applies only to the companies that filed the appeal. "We are pleased that the Court of Appeals recognized the undeserved harm to parties who were not named in the lawsuit, and that our customers will continue to be able to introduce new products into the U.S. marketplace during the appeals process," said Alex H. Rogers, Qualcomm's senior vice president and legal counsel.