Google has quietly opened its first “Google store” in London this morning. The store, which at this point only sells Chromebooks and and accessories, is actually a 285 square foot store within a store, as it’s situated inside of the Tottenham Court Road PC World.

According to a report from the London Evening Standard, this “low-key experiment” could be a sign of bigger things to come for Google in the retail space if successful. Google UK’s head of consumer marketing Arvind Desikan has this to say:

“It is our first foray into physical retail. This is a new channel for us and it’s still very, very early days. It’s something Google is going to play with and see where it leads.”

Based on research showing roughly 80 percent of laptops are sold through brick and mortar retail shops, Google’s betting Chromezone will be the best place to sell their Chromebooks:

“We found anecdotally that when people tried the device and played with it, that made a huge difference to their understanding of what the Chromebook is all about. People will be able to go in and have a play with the devices. We want to see whether people understand what this device is all about and monitor their reaction when they try it out.”


Google plans to open up another Chromezone retail shop in Essex on October 7 and more to follow as part of the pilot project. According to a Google spokeswoman, those shops will be designed in the same “Googley” spirit as the new London PC World store.

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17 Responses to “Google opens up shop in London with “Chromezone” retail store”

  1. founddaily says:

    The t-shirts, the lanyards, do seem derivative. Having said that, other retail outlets did the lanyard thing before Apple. The store fit-out though? When was the last time anyone saw a bright blue bench with rounded corners in an Apple store? The overhanging lower white bench? Maybe it's just my own limited experience with Apple stores…

  2. dan barker says:

    Here're some more photos, plus a comparison against Apple's concession in the same store:

    http://www.barker.dj/blog/chromezone-photos

    Hope it's useful!

    dan

  3. Uncle Bernie says:

    It makes sense in a business sense, but my contempt for them is bottomless. Hey! Welcome to Chromedome! Let's do a search!

  4. Kriz says:

    Tacky plastics and useless netbooks please take my money errrrrr

  5. JonB says:

    @Mike Willams

    I take your point.. but the craptops they have on their gaudy multicoloured stands beg to disagree with you.

  6. Blue shirts AND the hanging badge in the front. I'm all for Google trying out the retail thing but couldn't they at least be a bit more creative and do something that somebody else isn't already doing? Take away the Google props and you'd swear you were looking at something to do with an Apple store.

  7. Rob says:

    How many employees do you need in a 285 square foot store space? 30? 50? 1000?

  8. Zephaniah says:

    Love it. Now, could we get one in Seattle, WA please.

  9. Chitoac says:

    Look to me like a copy spam of Apple

  10. koshermeal says:

    "Lamezone"

  11. Morgan says:

    Wow! Watch out Apple – Googles ChromeZone has TWO customers. When was the last time an Apple store had more employees than customers?

  12. Josh says:

    Apple store rip off. I'm not an apple fanboy but that blue shirts look familiar

  13. banjoe says:

    why are they wearing blue t-shirts