RIM and This Tech Giant are Not Texting Smiley Faces Now

Varia Holdings, the current owner of a patented emoticon button, claims Research in Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM) and Samsung are unlawfully using its property on several phones including the Samsung Acclaim, Captivate, Epic, Galaxy Nexus, Nexus S and Transform, and the BlackBerry Bold, Curve, Pearl and Storm.

The patent, titled “Emoticon input method and apparatus” was originally issued to Wildseed Ltd. in 2007 before it was purchased by Varia Holdings, a company believed to be related to the AOL (NYSE:AOL) spin-off Varia Mobile. Basically, the button allows users to choose from a menu of emoticons rather than typing them out one character at a time.

Samsung also possesses a patent that has to do with the process of entering an emoticon on a mobile device, which it used in its litany of  lawsuits against Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL).

Here’s how these stocks are reacting to the news:

Research In Motion Limited (NASDAQ:RIMM): RIMM shares recently traded at $14.02, down $0.45, or 3.11%. They have traded in a 52-week range of $12.45 to $64.63. Volume today was 7,057,507 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 21,491,100 shares. The company’s trailing P/E is 3.30, while trailing earnings are $4.25 per share.

AOL, Inc. (NYSE:AOL): AOL shares recently traded at $17.74, down $0.52, or 2.85%. They have traded in a 52-week range of $10.06 to $22.47. Volume today was 209,000 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 1,357,190 shares. The company’s trailing P/E is 148.38, while trailing earnings are $0.12 per share.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL): AAPL shares recently traded at $596.11, down $4.99, or 0.83%. They have traded in a 52-week range of $310.50 to $601.77. Volume today was 12,402,028 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 17,599,100 shares. The company’s trailing P/E is 16.95, while trailing earnings are $35.14 per share.

To contact the reporter on this story: Lindsey Grossman at staff.writers@wallstcheatsheet.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at editors@wallstcheatsheet.com

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