Infinium labs have confirmed that their on-demand games service will not be launched in time for the Christmas rush, and has been pushed back to an unspecified date in 2005.

In the statement from Infinium, president and COO Kevin Bachus explained the company's rationale behind the decision: -

"We were on track to offer the Phantom Game Service later this year. However, we can't do it alone; we need our strategic partners to help us get the word out. And many of our key marketing and retail partners, as well as publishers, have told us they believe the best way to make the service successful is to hold off for now. ââ¬Å

"Retailers gear their 4th quarter holiday promotions around gift-giving opportunities, and they feel, as we do, that our service will not be bought primarily as a 'gift' for someone else. It will more likely be a self-purchase. One buyer told us, 'We have a tremendous number of opportunities to showcase the Phantom early next year, and we don't want the Phantom to get lost in all that we already have planned for the holidays. Let's allow the time we need to make a strong, successful entry next year.ââ¬Â

"It actually was not a big deal for us. While we wanted to move faster, because we're excited about the response we've been having from everyone, we felt we needed to listen to our partners. And our capital acquisition plan is fine with the move to next year."

As announced only a few days ago, Infinium have got the support of 22 publishers, though notable absentees from the list are the big-hitters EA, Activision and THQ; don't be surprised if, by the time the Phantom makes its' appearance, two of those three have also signed up.

We'll be following the development of the Phantom as it progresses.

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