The Odd Couple: Alienware & the Phantom
Where would this blog be without Infinium Labs? The soap opera just won't die. On Monday, Phantom Entertainment (aka Infinium Labs, the company that never brought you the Phantom console) announced that Alienware has ordered the Phantom Lapboard for its PC gear product line & Media Center PCs.
The Phantom Lapboard is a wireless keyboard & laser mouse combo that enables users to work or play games up to 30 feet away from your system. Check out a quick demo from this month's DigitalLife conference:
This is (shockingly) good news for 2 reasons. First off, it appeared the November launch was in jeopardy. In an interview last week, CEO Greg Koler indicated that the Lapboards had not yet been manufactured. Second and most important, this is the first time in 2 years that Phantom Entertainment has partnered with a legitimate, well-respected company. Alienware is one of the most popular gaming manufacturers in the business; so popular, in fact, that it was bought out by Dell Computers earlier this year in a deal exceeding $1 billion. Alienware moves product, and including the Lapboard with its gaming machines means plenty of potential revenue for Phantom Entertainment.
From an investing point of view, this may be an excellent risk/reward play with PHEI's stock down 90% (not a mistype) for the year. The stock is priced with the expectation that Phantom Entertainment will not survive into 2007 (much less ever launch a product). If the Lapboard hits the shelves in the coming weeks, $.02 should be an easy target.
Although this is appears to be great news for Phantom Entertainment, as always we'll believe it when we see it! With no funding, we're not exactly sure how they will come up with the funds to build the Lapboards. Preorders are being taken on Phantom.net, but credit cards are not being charged until the product is delivered. Hopefully PHEI is following Alienware's original business model of "Pay first, build later".
I've contacted Phantom Entertainment's PR department at firstname.lastname@example.org with these concerns and will post their response if one is ever received. Cross your fingers!