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Phantom finally materializing?

Oft-delayed project gets another release date; PC game downloading service set for release early next year.

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Phantom Entertainment, formerly known as Infinium Labs, has been talking about the Phantom Game Service for years, but the project now appears to be nearly complete. The company has announced that it has enlisted software development firm VertiCity to convert the Phantom Game Service software to run on existing PCs. Phantom expects the client software to be ready in the first quarter of next year.

Originally, the Phantom was announced as a console that would bring the PC experience to the living room. After several delays and much mocking from the gaming community, the company rebranded its product the Phantom Game Service. While it still involved a special box hooked up to the TV, management emphasized that it was developing a subscription offering for streaming games and was not a competitor for Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo. Last month, the company revealed that it was ditching the TV route entirely, scaling back the Phantom to run as a PC software application.

The first Phantom product, the keyboard-and-mouse combo Lapboard, is scheduled to begin shipping in November. The Lapboard is available from Phantom's Web site for $129.95. However, those who place an order before September 30 will receive $30 off.

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