A while back, a company called Infinium Labs announced that they’d be introducing a new gaming console called The Phantom. Between the very near-future release date (December 2003) and the amazingly high number of games they claim would be available (upwards of 30,000) most people wrote it off as a big hoax.
This week, G4’s call-in/chat-in talk show, G4TV.COM had a phone interview with Rob Shambro, COO of Infinium, to talk about the product. And it turns out, product might be the wrong word for it, as The Phantom sounds more like a service. Shambro referred to it playing “PC and ported Console” titles, which may explain the 30,000 title figure, in the first place. Second, there’s is no CD or DVD drive in the unit, and your cable or broadband provider has to provide support for it. In fact, it sounded like the hardware will come from your provider when you sign up for the service; you won’t go out and buy a box at all. It’ll be more like your cable box. Games with be streamed down to a 100-plus gig hard disk on the unit, and you’ll pay some kind of a subscription fee to play them. The box features an Intel processor and nVidia graphics chipset.
So, hoax or reality? The jury is still out, but the product Shambro described sounded a bit more feasible than a console system rolling out with 30,000 titles, y’know? Infinium is supposed to be showing more at E3, so I guess we’ll have to wait until then to learn more.