Is The Phantom Finally Dead?

from the giving-up-the-ghost dept

For years, we’ve been waiting on the Phantom gaming console — not because we really cared, but just because it had pretty much become the king of all vaporware. You’d be hard pressed to find somebody that actually believed it existed, despite the protests of its “manufacturer”, Infinium. Now comes word that the company is putting the Phantom on hold, in favor of bringing the gaming keyboard it announced in December to market. But guess what? Infinium says it needs more money to commercialize the keyboard. Apparently that’s what happens when you never actually get around to selling any products. An SEC filing also details the company’s plethora of unpaid debts, and shows that of the $62.7 million the company has spent since the end of 2002, just $3.5 million has gone to development costs. Perhaps the logical question isn’t why did they spend so little on development, but why did they spend so much, considering their actual output?

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Comments on “Is The Phantom Finally Dead?”

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Anonymous Pundet says:


The obvious answer for where the other $62 million has gone: I would suspect right into the hands of organized crime. It’s probably funneled through lots of interesting channels. E.g. lavish expenditures on marketing, facilities, furniture, … basically like a “mini-dot-com” ripoff, except perhaps a ripoff from the get go.

Raise an IPO on vaporware, spend next to nothing to develop it, funnel the rest of the money to your buddies and out of the country.

If the SEC can’t prosecute this company’s behavior, than why trust the markets at all?

Max Messinger (user link) says:

Re: Obvious

Exactly, you build up the company, get some money form stock and then just vanish. Maybe they named the console the Phantom as a joke. Hmmm. Well, it really is too bad that the SEC is too slow and cumbersome to deal with problmes before, oh, I don’t know, $62 million dollars disappear. The Tech Journals

BD says:

Re: Re: Obvious

I thought this was dead a while ago. There was no way this company could compete with microsoft and sony. Especially when you look at how much they were spending on development. 4 years and $62 million and all they come up with is a keyboard. It’s obvious all they were developing was a big scam that got them rich. The SEC needs to investigate where all the money was spent. What I mean to say is who got rich and retired.

WollyHood says:

Well yeah...

If investors waste $62m in a risky venture then the right people to blame are the SEC. Don’t blame investors who fail to do their due diligence. Don’t blame investors who enter into an arrangement knowing the risks and attendant rewards. Don’t blame the managers who gambled on an audacious and possibly lucrative idea. Blame the government agents who oversee the market where it occurred.

And whatever you do don’t notice that the market mechanism is working as it ought by exposing the bad venture. That the accounting information demanded by the SEC is in fact cited in the article. Be sure to insist that it should have happened sooner.

Anonymous Coward says:

No Subject Given

This falls squarely in the “if you invested with this company, you got exactly the payoff you deserved” situation.

Complaining to the SEC about this company is like calling the cops because the speakers you bought out of the back of that panel van were actually just bricks in a used Klipsch box.

Considered it an expensive lesson learned.


Anonymous Coward says:

Re: No Subject Given

Did any of the investors think about were their millions were going? Didn’t anybody at all get pissed after all these years of “development” and all the company has to show as was a keyboard? Forget the CES, the investors really should have said something, asked for reports, photos, shareholder meetings, jesus christ.

Anonymous Coward says:

No Subject Given

just recently the company showed at e3 which isn’t bad, so did hundreds of others… they have a new director now. and basicly its just gona be a computer with some special edition of xp on it with nvida graphics card. the idea is good.
they will be competing and using microsoft at the same time, which is a weird idea.
so i have mixed oppinions, but maybe the new ceo is actually trying. i love games and this sounds like a good idea… even though it’s staggering.

DittoBox (user link) says:

DeLorean anyone

Hmmm, I wonder if they’re also offering a Phantom built into a DeLorean, now that would be cool.

The /. way:
1. Start fake company with fake product (DeLorean, Phantom, OLED keyboard)
2. Get fake dollars from fake vulture capitalists
3. Get real dollars from real vulture capitalists
4. Spend some fake dollars on development
5. Buy a hummer limo
6. Move to the Bahamas
7. Profit!

Jeffrey Kroll (user link) says:


Ha… sad thing is this company is located about a block from where I am currently sitting. I can look out my window of my office and see the Infinium sign. The company is currently located in Sarasota, FL… oddly enough … the sign was being worked recently, so that leaves me only to wonder if they are going to be closing there doors soon.

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