We’ve seen Google play around in retail spaces before, but nothing has ever stuck. Currently, the best bet for buying Google hardware in a local store is at a Verizon store or your local Best Buy. Now, Google is expanding its footprint in the latter…

“Google Shops” are not retail stores, but rather small areas of larger retail locations which show off Google’s various products including the Pixel, VR headsets, Chromecast, and even Chromebooks. Google is working with Best Buy in Canada to open up these shops at select locations.

As TechCrunch reports from visiting one of the first locations, Google has grouped products together to show customers how they can be used together. For example, a Chromecast with a Pixel or a Pixel with a Daydream View headset. Janell Fischer, Google’s Director of Retail Marketing explains:

We love it when people can come in, discover, play and have fun and it just happens to be with technology, so we’ve really tried to layer on lots of different immersive sorts of experiences, some that are direct demonstrations of the product and product features, but some that are more exploratory and fun.

The space is designed around Google’s current products, but unlike Google’s pop-up shop in New York City, this space is designed to last, so everything can be easily swapped out with the new products. Also included in the space are things like the “Portal,” a large display which can display things such as Google Earth to give customers a unique experience.

Unfortunately, this seems to be limited to Canada for now. Fischer said: “We don’t have any plans to do anything in the US right now.” However, considering everything Google has done here and the emphasis the company has been putting on its products over the past few weeks, I can’t imagine we won’t eventually see something like this make its way to the States in one form or another.

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Ben Schoon

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