NTP has offered Research in Motion (RIM) a new settlement deal asking for 5.7 percent of RIM's future revenue from US BlackBerry sales, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The two companies announced a $450 million settlement deal earlier this year in their dispute over whether RIM's BlackBerry handhelds and wireless e-mail system infringes upon patents held by NTP.

But that settlement collapsed in June, setting up court hearings that could lead to the reimposition of an injunction on sales of the BlackBerry in the US.

A RIM executive confirmed Thursday that the companies have been in talks recently in front of a court-appointed mediator, but did not comment on the substance of those talks. NTP's lawyer Thursday declined to comment on any talks.

Television business news channel CNBC reported Friday that NTP co-founder Don Stout received a settlement offer from RIM Thursday night, but that NTP considered it "unacceptable".

RIM's business is growing as the BlackBerry handhelds become a fixture among corporate executives. The $450 million settlement announced in January was for a perpetual licence to NTP's patents, rather than an ongoing royalty. The new settlement includes a fixed lump-sum payment, in addition to the 5.7 percent royalty rate, it is reported.

Few legal analysts believe RIM will risk letting the US courts impose an injunction on BlackBerry sales that could shut down the service, and a new settlement is widely expected.