In 1997, toy manufacturer Tiger Electronics (later known for "Furbies") introduced a handheld video game system designed to topple Nintendo's Game Boy eight-year reign on the industry. Called the "game.com," the system retailed for $69.95 and included a puzzle cartridge called Lights Out as the pack-in game. Games for the handheld were initially priced between $19.95 and $29.95.
In contrast to the Game Boy, Tiger's handheld features a horizontal layout with a directional pad positioned to the left and four buttons located to the right of a 2.25" monochromatic LCD screen. Yet the system's most distinguishing feature is its touch-sensitive display, allowing players to highlight menu choices or to control certain games using the included stylus. Synthesized speech greeted players when they activated the system, and multiple cartridge ports let players store two games on the system instead of one.
The game.com also included five built-in applications: a four-function calculator, a calendar, an address book, a solitaire game that utilizes the touch screen feature, and a high score list that saved a player's top performances in each game to the built-in lithium battery. Key peripherals released for the system included an Internet cartridge, a Web Link cartridge, and a link cable called the "compete.com."
Released at a price point of $19.95, the Internet cartridge allowed the game.com to be linked to an external modem and connect to any ISP (Internet Service Provider) that provided text-only browsing. Tiger sold its own 14.4bps modem for $49.00 and offered a specially tailored ISP called the "Delphi Commercial Service" to game.com users. The system was also capable of receiving and sending electronic mail.
Tiger later released the Web Link cartridge for $19.95, which allowed players to link their game.com system to a home PC and access the game.com website. Once there, they could upload their high scores and compete for a place on the World Records page. In September 1998, Tiger released a smaller version of its system named the game.com pocketpro. It featured a slightly smaller screen, a more streamlined casing, and a single cartridge port. It contained all of the standard game.com features and retailed for $49.95. ~ Dave Beuscher, All Game Guide