Since Google became known for their Search engine, it is hard to picture them as a company that builds products that can be showcased in a physical store. It’s true that they are more known for the software running on laptops, smartphones and other electronic devices built by other companies. The company teams up with some manufacturers to create their Nexus smartphones and tablets, which offer and Android experience just like the creators of the operating system intended. Plus, Google’s engineers have already built a few pieces of hardware such as the Chromebook Pixel and the recently announced Pixel C tablet. We don’t know if Google will keep building devices under the Pixel name, but those products are definitely worthy of being showcased.
Apparently, Google has thought of creating a retail store so that people could try their products. They have even opened a kiosk in a popular store located in London to let consumers play and experiment with these devices and even try them when they are connected to each other. Yet, the plans to open their first retail store are now cancelled. The company was going to open that store in the area of SoHo in New York City. The exact location was 131 Greene St., which is about a block away from an Apple Store and this zone seems to be welcoming some famous fashion brands and other shops.
Google even spent almost $6 million in renovating this location, they modified the ceiling with a glass skylight, the bricks on the walls are now exposed and enlarged the windows. The exterior got restored and the entrance was made more accessible from the outside. The surface of the store was 5,442 square-foot but now the company is trying to sublease that space for $2.25 million annually. It is not clear why the search company abandoned their decision to make this their first retail store, perhaps they’re looking for another location to establish it, or maybe they just simply weren’t ready. These kinds of stores have clearly worked for Apple and Microsoft though, but it might be too soon to tell if those will work for Google’s needs. Carriers and mobile operators already showcase some smartphones in their stores, so perhaps Google will have to find a way or offer something extra to make their stores successful.