April 22, 2018

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

28 December 2017, 12:28 | Yvette Williams

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

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

According to a new report, Google is planning to open physical stores in India, a move that's aimed at boosting the sales of Pixel phones in the Asian country. Post the launch of the Pixel 2 / 2 XL in India, we had already seen a lot of pop-up stores at various malls which let people experience these phones first-hand.

The tentative timeline for the physical Google stores is in the latter part of 2018. Google doesn't quite enjoy the same brand cachet as Samsung or Xiaomi, and launching retail stores could be useful in increasing awareness of the brand's hardware products.

According to The Economic Times, these traditional stores are now being evaluated, with the locations possibly being branded as "experience centres".

Google has reportedly contacted at least "two prominent malls" in India to request space for a more permanent location.

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Google has not been particularly concerned about the sales performance of its latest Pixel devices in India and the company has been lax in its promotion strategy.

Google might also set up shop in the country to sell their other devices, such as the Google Home smart speakers, Chromecast streaming devices, View virtual reality (VR) headsets, and their Pixel laptops. Apple's seeking a single-brand license to open its own stores in India, and Google might do the same. Larger smartphone makes like Google, however, have not really had a hands-on approach, until now. More malls are perhaps receiving enquiries for setting up of stores by Google.

"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 Dilip Modi, chief executive of Spice Connect, according to ET. "So, maybe this could (have encouraged Google) for the decision (to open outlets)", said a senior executive at one of the malls where Google had setup the pop-up store. Apple, however, has been lobbying hard in India for single-brand retail licence to be able to open its own stores. Some of the other companies, like Apple and Samsung have taken the franchisee route, where the companies offer a standardized design and layout for the stores and they can even choose different parties in various cities to open the outlets.

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