A Tampa Bay area technology company, Infinium Labs Corporation, will develop and market a new game console that, it claims, will outperform the XBOX, Sony Playstation II, and GameCube.
Infinium Labs has engineered its prototypes and expects to unveil the new gaming console in March of 2003. The company intends to launch the game console to the U.S. consumer market by November 2003. Although technical details about the system, codenamed Phantom, are not available the company does not seem intimidated by the size and capabilities of its competitors.
The company plans to market a high performance gaming console and delivery system to provide consumers with options and capabilities that, Infinium Labs claim, are not available in today's marketplace. The console will appeal to the hard-core gamer and the high end consumer electronic purchaser. This next generation game console will aim to provide a robust, fault tolerant delivery system that will support games on demand, game rentals, game demos, seamless upgrades and patch management. The game console will be an ALWAYS ON BROADBAND DEVICE. It aims to be easy enough for children to use independently yet so advanced that it will exceeds the needs of hard-core gamers.
The first reaction to bold claims such as these is that the company either know a great secret or that they are just very naive. But Infinium Labs claim their secret lies in the makeup of their team. Infinium Labs was formed by veteran entrepreneurs who have a successful track record in building large scale companies and advanced architectures for supporting massive eCommerce and enterprise applications. Combining skills from Telco, Data Communications, Digital Rights Management, Software Development and Security, the management team brings together a unique array of skills to develop the most robust next generation gaming console and delivery network on the market.
All of their staff may be ideally suited to designing and developing a content delivery system but there does seem to be a lack of people with console experience and in the current competitve market conditions this could prove a very important drawback.
The Infinium Labs game console will feature a high tech design and offer ease of use for the variety of game players worldwide. The on-demand delivery system will appeal to hard-core gamers as well as casual users. The unique design architecture will allow for delivery of a large number of games and the ability to participate in online massive multiplayer gaming. Key features include:
-Fastest console on the market
-Broadest selection of preloaded games
-Cross Platform capabilities
-State of the art design and architecture
-Advanced accessories and wireless capabilities
-Online connectivity for multi player gaming
-Seamless upgrades and patch management
-A multi tiered subscription service that meets the needs of casual, moderate and hard-core game players
-Demo games before purchasing or subscribing
-Games on demand
As far as games are concerned, the company are not very specific but they claim that there are currently 32,679 retail game titles available and 418 shareware game titles and this does not include; adult, casino, sequels and new releases in past 6 months.
Such a claim can only mean that they hope to reach some form of license agreement with developers in order to be able to offer PC Games over their console. So nothing new, as far as games are concerned, here.
This can only mean that Phantom will be a PC in a box, much like XBox is. This in turn brings up the question of cost, how does the company plan to avoid charging the same amount of money for Phantom, as they would for a similar PC? One possibility is subsidy. This would require a very large investment with an equally large risk, something verging on the impossible for a new company which is about to fight well established console giants.
Probably the best way to close a story such as this one is by Infinium Labs' closing statement, which may reflect their main strategy, which will be to entice developers by promising a decent profit, the advanced system will provide game developers and publishers a secure and efficient software distribution system. Infinium Labs intends for game developers and publishers to reap greater profits using this new game delivery system.