Five years ago, Google began manufacturing its own smartphones and voice-assisted speakers. Currently, Google has a store that sells them.
The company plans to open its first physical store on the ground floor of its Manhattan headquarters in Chelsea on Thursday. The store will feature a variety of Google gadgets, including Pixel smartphones, Nest home devices, and Fitbit wearable fitness products.
Internally, shoppers can try out devices and subscription services, and existing customers can get on-site repairs for broken products. The 5,000-square-foot store will include rooms where customers can experience “real-life scenarios” where Google products can help, the company said.
Non-Google products such as T-shirts, hats and dog toys and Google branded gear will also be on sale.
The store is Google’s latest attempt to hit the hardware sector, which Google is just starting to develop, and to be an extension of the pop-up stores that have opened in the last few years.
Since launching Google-branded smartphones in 2016, Google has expanded the range of devices it sells. We also acquired Fitbit and integrated Nest, a manufacturer of devices such as thermostats. Nest was an independent subsidiary of Google’s parent company Alphabet.
Google has invested heavily in the hardware sector, but it’s still a retrofit to its major advertising sector and its fast-growing cloud computing unit. Google didn’t comment on whether it plans to open more stores.
Technology companies that have opened retail stores have mixed achievements. Apple stores have been very successful, enhancing their brand and offering showcases of new products. Meanwhile, Microsoft said it closed all stores last year, more than a decade after opening retail stores to step up its own commitment to hardware.
Google opens a physical store in New York
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