BlackBerry maker Research In Motion Ltd. spent $716,000 in the third quarter to lobby Congress on patent laws and radio spectrum allocation, according to a disclosure report.




That's 28 percent less than the $995,000 the company spent in the second quarter and 5 percent less than the $750,000 it spent a year ago, according to quarterly reports companies, trade groups and other organizations file with Congress on their lobbying activity.

Like other high-tech companies, RIM is often involved in expensive patent disputes. Tech companies have also been seeking more airwaves to offer wireless services. RIM stands to gain from people buying its devices to use those services.

Although RIM is a Canadian company, it generates much of its revenue in the U.S. and thus has interest in U.S. policies.

RIM is struggling to come up with a formidable challenger to popular smartphones from Apple and other companies. Phones based on a new system are expected next year, and analysts say RIM's future depends on it.

RIM filed the latest report on its lobbying with the House clerk's office on Oct. 20.