Nokia and Apple have been involved in a big patent dispute for over a year now, but it appears that Nokia just got a jolt of support from the International Trade Commission. ITC staff recently issued a memo stating that there is no evidence that Nokia infringed on any of Apple's patents, and that some of those patents aren't even applicable to the case at all. The staff will recommend that Nokia not be charged, although the final decision will be made by a judge in February. Nokia is also alleging that Apple infringed on some patents, and that trial is scheduled for the end of this month.
This news is pretty big for Nokia in Apple' case against them since, while the judge has the final say, the ITC staff's findings will carry quite a bit of weight in the judge's decision. If the judge does end up ruling in Apple's favor, some Nokia handsets may end up being banned in the U.S., although that seems unlikely to happen at this point. Next up: Nokia's suit against Apple. Will the ITC staff weigh in on this patent suit, too? We won't have to wait long to find out. Stay tuned!