Google Brings its Toolbox to Chicago
Google welcomed neighbors and technology fans to the newly opened Google Hardware pop-up store in Chicago today. The first of its kind for the California-based tech giant, the store showcases their newly developed products.
When you enter the Hardware Store, the third- generation of made-by-Google products (tools as they’re referred to in the store) are on display. On the first floor, the new Pixel 3 and Pixel 3XL smart phones and Google Home Hub, a smart speaker and home assistant system that competes with Amazon’s Alexa, are on display. Customers can touch and feel products and store associates are equipped with tool belt aprons to stay on theme.
While the first floor is full of Google’s line of products, the second floor brings a more interactive space with immersive experiences to bring the products to life. Here, visitors have a chance to checkout a “toolbox” containing a Pixel 3 phone for customers to play around with on their own, instead of with a locked phone downstairs. The box includes product cards with activity suggestions and guidance to explore the phones best features. A prop kitchen is outfitted with a Google Home Hub that opens drawers when asked for a snack. Pressing the Nest doorbell outside the “treehouse” opens the front door, switches on the lights and adjusts the blinds and temperature. A “photo op” station invites guest to try out the Pixel’s Top Shop feature which takes a series of photos and flags the most recommended ones.
The Google Hardware popup store mirrors the online store and emphasizes the importance of both online and physical touchpoints in a space where customers can experience the products in action. Is this Google’s effort to compete in the age of Amazon and Apple? We shall see, but this seems to be a solid first foray into the world of bricks and mortar.