RIM Becomes BlackBerry: Tech Weekly Recap

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- This was a massive week for Research In Motion ( RIMM), which announced its long-anticipated BlackBerry 10 OS, two new smartphones and a major corporate rebranding.

Keen to draw a line under a frustrating period marred by delayed product launches and share losses, RIM changed its company name to BlackBerry on Wednesday. The Waterloo, Ontario-based company will trade under the ticker symbol "BBRY" from Feb. 4.

The Canadian handset maker unveiled its new BlackBerry 10 operating system and two new smartphones: the Z10 and Q10. The Z10 is a touchscreen device with a 4.2-inch display, while the Q10 comes with a physical QWERTY keyboard.

The Z10 will be available to U.S. consumers in March, with the Q10 expected to arrive in April.

Clearly intent on injecting some youthful vitality into the company's image, BlackBerry also appointed Alicia Keys as the company's new global creative director.

Investors, however, were unmoved by the flurry of announcements, and the company's shares fell sharply in the hours following Wednesday's news.

BlackBerry also offered a brief glimpse of the company's Super Bowl ad on Friday.

The company's shares ended the week down nearly 26% at $13.02.

Facebook ( FB) reported its fourth-quarter results after market close on Wednesday, beating Wall Street's estimates, although the company's shares fell on concerns about its spending.

Facebook's costs and expenses rose sharply during the fourth quarter, jumping 82% year over year to $1.06 billion. However, CFO David Ebersman told TheStreet that he isn't concerned.

"Our key issues are investments in our people Facebook ended the quarter with over 4,600 employees and infrastructure," he said, during an interview. "We are investing in engagement and monetization, and we're showing the results."

Excluding items, Facebook reported earnings of 17 cents a share on a 40% jump in revenue to $1.585 billion. Revenue from advertising was up 41% to $1.33 billion, accounting for 84% of total revenue. Mobile revenue represented 23% of advertising revenue in the fourth quarter, up from 14% in the third quarter.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters expected Facebook to earn 15 cents a share on sales of $1.53 billion in the fourth quarter.

On Thursday Facebook also ramped up its e-commerce efforts, introducing its own gift cards.

Facebook shares slipped 5.7% during the week's trading to close at $29.73 on Friday.

Apple ( AAPL) grabbed its share of headlines this week, unveiling a 128-Gbyte iPad on Tuesday.

"With more than 120 million iPads sold, it's clear that customers around the world love their iPads, and every day they are finding more great reasons to work, learn and play on their iPads rather than their old PCs," said Philip Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, in a statement.

The new 128GB versions of the fourth-generation iPad will be available Feb. 5. The Wi-Fi model will cost $799, and the Wi-Fi + cellular model will run $929.

Apple shares ended the week up 3.1% at $453.62.

Yahoo! ( YHOO) reported fourth -quarter and fiscal 2012 results after market close on Tuesday.

The Sunnyvale, Calif.-based company reported an annual revenue increase for the first time in four years, with sales increasing 2% year over year. Yahoo! also beat Wall Street's expectations, much to the delight of investors. Excluding items, Yahoo! earned 32 cents a share on $1.22 billion in revenue during the fourth quarter. Yahoo! revenues exclude traffic acquisition costs (TAC). Analysts were looking for earnings of 28 cents a share on $1.21 billion for the quarter.

TheStreet's Chris Ciaccia said that Yahoo!'s results suggest that CEO Marissa Mayer is pushing the company in the right direction.

Yahoo! shares fell 3.0% during the week's trading to close at $19.76.

Qualcomm ( QCOM) surged on Wednesday after the chipmaker blew past Wall Street's fiscal first-quarter estimates and offered robust second-quarter guidance.

The San Diego-based firm reported revenue of $6.02 billion, a 29% increase from a year earlier and well above analysts' forecast of $5.9 billion. Excluding items, Qualcomm earned $1.26 a share, a rise of 30%. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters were looking for earnings of $1.13 a share.

Qualcomm shares gained 4.82% during the week's trading to close at $66.73 on Friday.

Amazon ( AMZN) posted a 22% fourth-quarter revenue hike on Tuesday, but missed Wall Street's earnings estimate.

The online retailer earned 21 cents a share on $21.27 billion in revenue, compared to earnings of 38 cents a share and sales of $17.43 billion in the prior year's quarter. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters were looking for earnings of 28 cents a share and revenue of $22.26 billion.

Amazon shares slipped 6.7% to $265 during the week's trading.

Tech earnings season slows down considerably next week, with LinkedIn ( LNKD) and Cognizant ( CTSH) amongst the firms on deck. Sprint ( S) also reports its fourth-quarter results early on Wednesday.

Enjoy the weekend, everyone!

-- Written by James Rogers in New York.

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