Google (GOOG) may hate the patent suit players, but it sure doesn’t hate the patent suit game. As Network World reports, Google ramped up its patent filings last year and was granted 1,151 United States patents in 2012, a 170% increase from the number of patents it was awarded in 2011. By increasing its patent output, Google actually surpassed rival Apple (AAPL), which was granted 1,136 patents on the year, a 68% increase from the year before.
Producing more patents is part of Google’s larger overall strategy of having a stronger intellectual property portfolio capable of combatting lawsuits from competitors. The company’s acquisition of Motorola was part of this strategy as well, although a recent deal with the Federal Trade Commission has left many of the Motorola patents much less valuable since Google has agreed to not use them in offensive patent suits in the future.