IT

Google reportedly planning retail stores in India as part of Pixel push

Google reportedly planning retail stores in India as part of Pixel push

The Economic Times reports that Google is now planning on opening "experience centers" in the country where people can try Google's flagship phone, the Pixel 2. As an example, he pointed out that the pop-up store in his mall included a dark room so that consumers could see for themselves how well the Pixel 2 camera takes pictures in locations with low-lights. The third person said Google had hired a senior Apple executive as part of its plan.

India is undoubtedly one of the hottest markets for smartphones, and Google is still way behind rivals such as Apple and Samsung when it comes to selling smartphones in the country. As per the information available, Google will open stores by Q4 2018. Estimates suggest that Google's flagship handsets are lagging behind the competition in India, so opening physical stores in the country could help boost sales of its Pixel smartphones. Opening Google's stores will not just boot the Pixel smartphones sales, it is being expected that they will sell Chromebook Pixel, Google Home, Google Home Mini, Chromecast, Chromecast Ultra, and Daydream View as well.

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It is pertinent to point out that it is not as if Google will be going the brick and mortar model for the first time. We can expect these new stores to open up in the second half of next year. The report notes representatives from a couple of malls have confirmed they have received requests from the company to setup outlets.

For those of you who didn't know, Google had, in fact, tried its luck at opening retail stores in India back in 2013. "We had done two stores as part of the pilot and then we could not proceed with the project as they did not meet with our desired objectives", said Chief Executive of Spice Connect, Dilip Modi.

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What is not clear, however, is the exact route the company will take to set these stores up. Samsung branded stores are owned and operated by franchisees in India, Xiaomi's Mi Home physical outlets are owned by franchisees. Getting a single-brand license gives Google more control over the design of its stores, but the process itself is a lengthy affair - Apple has been trying for over a year to acquire a license.

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