Google buys IBM patents to defend against litigation

Web giant has bought 1,029 technology patents, ranging from chip fabrication to search, giving it potential protection against future law suits

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Google has bought more than 1,000 patents from IBM, bolstering its patent portfolio as the company continues to fight legal battles on multiple fronts.

The web giant made the acquisition on the last month, but was spotted on the US Patent and Trademark records last Friday by the SEO By The Sea blog.

The patents cover a wide range of technologies, from servers and routers to chip fabrication and search functions, and the acquisition is seen as a defensive measure to protect Google against ligitiation.

SEO By The Sea author Bill Slawski, a SEO expert and former technology analyst, wrote that Google could find many of the patents useful in covering many of the activities in which it is currently engaged. "Many of them [patents] might act to help limit litigation aimed at Google," Slawski said.

The move comes on the heels of Google's failure to win a portfolio of patents offered by Nortel. The 6,000 patents were ultimately won by a coalition of companies including Apple and Microsoft with a bid of $4.5 billion, trumping Google's quirky bid for pi billion dollars ($3.14159 billion).

Back in April, prior to Google's failure to win the Nortel patents the company's General Counsel Kent Walker wrote a post on Google's official blog saying that the company hoped to "create a disincentive for others to sue Google" with its bid.

Google is currently involved in multiple patent law suits, including with enterprise software giant Oracle, and payments company, PayPal.