As shown by the recent Spotify lawsuit, patents are becoming ever more important in the world of technology, especially to those companies who are competing against one another to be the next big thing. That’s why Google has recently been buying up as many as it can get.

There are many reasons that big tech companies should be purchasing patents. The main reason of course is to defend one’s company from impending lawsuits, much like Spotify’s recent annoyance, from rivals. Also having a hold on a new technology patent automatically makes one the forerunner for said product. Additionally it gives one a leg-up on the competition in case new developments for a certain patent sprout up. By buying them from other companies, one puts themselves ahead.

That is why Google has bought so many patents out from under IBM this month. The search engine-and-so-much-more bought reportedly over one thousand patents from a former tech giant. The patents are said to run the gamut as far as platforms and applications go. Google gave a statement on its race to the top of patent purchases: “Like many tech companies, at times we’ll acquire patents that are relevant to our business needs. Bad software patent litigation is a wasteful war that no one will win.”

Recently Google, Apple and Microsoft have been in a bidding war for patents, almost as if to claim and mark their territory while they still can. Google’s large win this month follows a decided loss from last month when they were outbid on over six thousand patents from Nortel Networks. They were largely swept by Microsoft, Apple and others who offered over $4 billion for the set as opposed to Google’s paltry $900 million.

Google has been saying for some time that building up a defense of sorts with a patent list as long as one’s arm is important to stay afloat. General counsel Kent Walker stated previously that “a company’s best defenses against this kind of litigation is (ironically) to have a formidable patent portfolio, as this helps maintain your freedom to develop new products and services. Google is a relatively young company, and although we have a growing number of patents, many of our competitors have larger portfolios given their longer histories.” Hopefully Google’s youth does not hurt them in the end.