Through the end of October, the tech sector had logged 1,715 M&A deals worth approximately $104 billion, according to Dealogic.
By comparison, the entire U.S. M&A market had totaled 8,313 deals worth $960 billion in the same time period.
Those figures made tech the highest-spending sector in the M&A market through October – and make the top tech M&A deals of 2013 among the most expensive deal making of the year.
Whether the motive was to bolster services already offered or to tap into a new market, it's clear that tech behemoths didn't shy away from spending their cash hoards this year.
Companies like Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL), Google Inc. (Nasdaq: GOOG), and Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) are always on the lookout for acquisitions that will diversify and expand their portfolio of products and services. Keeping a hot tech startup away from the competition never hurts either.
That was the story in 2013, and it should continue in 2014. Tech companies like Snapchat, Uber, Square, LivingSocial, and countless others are ripe for IPOs or acquisitions next year.
Take a look at some of the more notable tech M&A from 2013:
Top Tech M&A Deals 2013
These two companies initially partnered in 2011 to help standardize the Windows Phone operating system. Then in September, Microsoft agreed to purchase Nokia's phone business and license to Nokia's patents for the steep price of $7.2 billion.
"The idea is simple," said Money Morning Defense & Tech Specialist Michael A. Robinson. "Microsoft is way behind in the mobile tech sector and needs to make a bold move to become a serious player. And now that CEO Steve Ballmer has announced his retirement, the software giant is about to embark on a turnaround plan. I expect that to include more acquisitions into areas with much greater growth than the stagnant PC market."
Nokia was a pioneer in the mobile phone industry and is still the second largest shipper of mobile phones in the world. However, as more consumers switch to smartphones, they've also switched brands. This year, Nokia fell off the list of top five smartphone makers.
Shareholders were not initially pleased with the news, as MSFT shares dropped 6% the day of the announcement. Since then, MSFT stock is up more than 13%.
2) Salesforce.com Inc. (NYSE: CRM) and ExactTarget Inc.: