Google grabs 217 IBM patents


The cloud computing colossus buys a large number of Big Blue's patents to boost its own collection.

Google this week announced it was investing further into patents by buying up 217 from legacy vendor IBM.

An update at the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) patent assignment database revealed the transfer of patents between the two, SEO by the Sea blog discovered.

Big Blue said it had nothing to add to the report and Google had not responded to a request for comment at the time of publication.

Google acquired 188 patents and 29 pending patent applications from IBM in the final week of 2011.

They cover a wide range of technologies, including those in data caching, load balancing, videoconferencing and instant messaging applications.

One patent covers the "method and apparatus for dynamically modifying web page display for mobile devices." Another covers "voice based keyword search algorithm."

Google has acquired plenty of patents from Big Blue over the past year. In July 2011, it gained 1,030 patent filings and another 1,022 in August.

With so many companies and patent trolls looking to hinder Google's progress via litigation, particularly targeting Android, the tech giant has sought to bolster its IP.

It received a treasure trove of patents when it acquired Motorola Mobility last year.

Google lashed out in 2011, claiming rivals including Apple and Microsoft had been part of an organised campaign attempting to undo Android through patent court cases.

It came after Google was pipped by its two chief competitors in attempting to buy a raft of Nortel patents.

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