Google is reportedly planning to set up brick-and-mortar stores in India next year. While Google hasn't officially commented, one of the sources familiar with the matter has said that Google has hired a senior Apple executive to be part of its expansion plans.
Now the company only sells the Pixel smartphones online and has a minor share in the smartphone market.
It is believed that Google's new store will be able to offer customers the crucial important hand-on experience of the premium Pixel phones. It is said that the company was pleased with the response received to its pop up centers opened recently in Mumbai and Delhi-NCR regions to showcase the newly launched Pixel 2 smartphones. If Google does decide to go ahead with the plan, the "experience centres" could be used to sell more than just the Pixel smartphones. One executive at a mall claims that the pop-ups have imparted on Google how retail is "important because you can't explain numerous features online".
Unlike in the US, Google in India hasn't made much of an effort to actively promote its Pixel smartphones among consumers. "They got good traction". "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. The positive response from these pop-up stores is being cited as one of the main motivating factors to open permanent stores. The likes of Samsung, Apple and Xiaomi have their stores run by other franchises in India. This is not the first time that Google is opening their outlets in India.
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