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After Years Of Flirting With Retail Stores, Google Opens “The Google Shop”
Store resides within London-based Currys PC Word.
A more ambitious Google retail strategy may be in the works.
In the past, Google has opened isolated holiday “pop-up stores” and today has branded areas within existing retail stores (e.g., Best Buy). But “The Google Shop” could be the beginning of a more sustained and aggressive retail push by Google.
According to Britain’s Telegraph, Google has opened The Google Shop inside retailer Currys PC Word:
The store, to be called The Google shop, will sell the company’s range of Android phones and tablets, Chromebook laptops, and Chromecast TV services. The shop will hold tutorials showing consumers how to use the devices and hold demonstrations showing off key Google apps.
The opening of the store within an existing retailer is very consistent with what Google has done to date, though this effort appears more lavish and ambitious. The Telegraph quotes Google’s UK marketing director James Elias saying, “We’re incredibly excited to launch this space – the first of its kind anywhere in the world – in London with Currys PC World.”
Assuming the response is positive it could lead to a larger push, although the article and Google are silent on that front. When bankrupt Radio Shack recently put most of its stores up for sale I speculated about the benefits of an Amazon or Google acquisition of many of those locations.
Ultimately neither company pursued those stores, which mostly went to Sprint.
There are numerous reasons for Google to have an Apple-like retail presence but it would also create new costs that Wall Street would undoubtedly not like or consider necessary.
Postscript: Google has also opened a new online store for its devices today. See our story: Google Takes On Apple Store With “The Google Store,” Starring The New Chromebook Pixel.