Report: Google planning its own stores

(Associated Press)

(Associated Press)

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Since Google’s Android operating system powers so many smartphones and other devices these days, it makes sense the multibillion-dollar company might establish its own stores to put more of the devices in consumers’ hands.

The Wall Street Journal reports the company, known originally for its search engine, is developing plans to launch retail stores in the U.S. The news site quotes people familiar with the plans as its source. The report says it isn’t clear when or where any stores would open.

Google, the company behind YouTube, Picasa, Gmail and the Chrome web browser, would be following the lead of its No. 1 competitor when it comes to operating systems, Apple. The company behind the iOS operating system, which powers iPhones, iPads and a range of other “i” products, has about 400 retail locations worldwide. Microsoft, another tech giant, has also opened locations to sell its software, Xboxes and new Surface tablets.

Both Apple and Microsoft have retail locations in metro Atlanta.

What might Google offer in its stores? For one, a much wider variety of phones than Apple has on its shelves. Devices running Android include Google’s own Nexus line of smartphones and tablets, in addition to laptops and desktop PCs running its Chrome OS operating system. There are devices by Motorola Mobility, which Google acquired last year, and other brands running Android, including Samsung, HTC and LG.

Do you think Google stores would give Apple’s a run for their money?

6 comments Add your comment

brad

February 19th, 2013
12:23 pm

Apple is on the way down again. just like the last time Steve Jobs left the company. It is now run by capitalists and the bottom line is all that matters. Look at their new “technologies”: Smaller Ipad, Larger Iphone. WOW!!! In 5-7 years, they will be back to their bankrupt self.

ljlkj

February 19th, 2013
1:11 pm

I want them to create their own mobile network. They have the money & the technical know-how. They have some of the best engineers in the world. I think they could create a mobile network that would rival Verizon’s without the nickel-and-diming Verizon is famous for. Same with TV.

David

February 19th, 2013
1:21 pm

I think this is a rather well timed strategy by Google. Honestly, up until this point, Google’s only property was virtual (Ex: Youtube, Picasa, ‘Google.com’, Chrome, etc), but now that it has its own device lineup, such as the Nexus Smartphones and Tablets, as well as the Chromebook and Chrome OS, I can see how they could make a Retail Location. It would certainly make Tech Support with the Nexus phones much easier. Also, I believe it would improve sales, because a lot of consumers prefer to see, hold, and/or test products before they buy. This holds especially true when it comes to expensive electronics.

I think Google needs to think about expanding their production lines before they dig too deep into building retailers, however. I went to buy a Nexus 4 yesterday, and decided against it due to the “Ships in 3-4 weeks” label where most companies would place “Out of Stock”. The Nexus 4 has been quite a hassel to keep in stock due to it’s desireability, and I’ve yet to see ANY Google devices (Chromebooks, Nexus’, Tablets, etc) in the general public. In order to build just 10 retailers, Google would have to surplus their supplies to be able to STOCK those 10 stores, otherwise a huge sale opportunity is lost, reducing the profit earned:money spent ratio.

Final verdict? Good move Google, but you already have the demand. Focus on supply for now, and build retailers after you have enough product to sell..

Synonomous

February 19th, 2013
1:42 pm

@ljlkj:

Oh, if Google did set up a mobile network, they would not nickel and dime you. They would just spy on all your conversations and text, and then sell any pertinent marketing info they gleaned to the highest bidder. Or turn it over to the government. Seems to be their M.O. with search, e-mail and social networking.

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