Ailing Canadian telecoms firm Nortel Networks has pushed back the auction date for the sale of thousands of its patents, owing to high levels of interest which could see bidders forced to pay a premium for the much sought-after intellectual property.
In a brief statement released on Thursday, the company said that the auction will be delayed for a week until the end of June.
"Nortel Networks Corporation today announced that, for reasons relating to the significant level of interest in its approximately 6,000 patents and patent applications, it is adjourning the commencement of the auction for the sale of such assets from 20 June 2011 to 27 June 2011," the statement noted.
The news comes just days after Google was reportedly given the all-clear by the US Department of Justice to pursue its $900m bid for the patents, which the search firm says it wants in order to safeguard innovation on its Android and Chrome platforms.
In a timely example of the kind of litigation Google is trying to prevent, Oracle has reportedly filed a multi-billion dollar lawsuit claiming that Google is using software in its Android platform which infringes Oracle's Java patents.
The "significant levels of interest" in the Nortel auction could mean that Google will be forced to up its bid if it wants to secure the patents.
Google was the first to throw its hat into the ring, but other big tech names are likely to follow, most notably Apple, RIM and potentially Nokia, all of which filed objections to Google's intention to buy the patents.
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