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Google denies plans to build its own retail stores

post #1 of 39
Thread Starter 
The head of Google's Android devision has shot down rumors that his company is planning to enter the retail space and directly sell the company's hardware to consumers.

Andy Rubin said in a roundtable at this week's Mobile World Congress that he feels there is no need for Google to create its own retail stores, according to All Things D. Rubin said customers no longer need to go into a store and "feel" products to make a decision, because most consumers talk to their friends and read reviews online.

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He also doesn't think Google's hardware division is mature enough at this point to warrant dedicated retail stores. The company sells a series of Nexus-branded phones and tablets, along with its own Chromebook laptops.

Rubin said at this week's show in Barcelona, Spain, that his company has nothing to announce, and even went as far as to say that Google as "no plans" to open its own stores.

Reports first cropped up last week claiming that Google is developing plans to build its own brick-and-mortar outlets to sell Google-branded products like the Nexus 7 tablet and Nexus 4 smartphone. However, that report said Google may not open its own stores until 2014, which could give the search giant more time to flesh out its hardware offerings.

Of course, Google's chief rival, Apple, has had tremendous success with its own retail stores ? outfits that now serve as the "face" of the company for many customers. And Microsoft got into the retail game in 2009, and has gradually expanded its own stores, which are frequently located in close proximity to existing Apple storefronts.
post #2 of 39
Ah, ok, so no then.





What? Any Rubin says so? Right¡

Fair enough, he does say: "doesn't think Google's hardware division is mature enough at this point to warrant dedicated retail stores" so possibly more copying needs to be done before copying the stores then.
post #3 of 39
Interesting.

Google essentially continues to ignore the vast sea of issues with Android including lack of support.

Google Stores would have (possibly) effectively addressed the support issues.
post #4 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacBook Pro View Post

Interesting.

Google essentially continues to ignore the vast sea of issues with Android including lack of support.

Google Stores would have (possibly) effectively addressed the support issues.

 

 

I think you are kidding ! Contrary to an internet transaction, in a Store, you have the customer physically present  in front of you. So you have to do something to address his questions, criticisms, claims ..... very demanding ... what we heard is consistent with Google's policy , so far ...

post #5 of 39

Yea - I think they simply do not have enough products to justify the expense of going retail.

Staff, rents, insurance, training and all the rest - to sell what, a handful of products.

Better for them to stay Internet based - for now.

post #6 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacBook Pro View Post

Interesting.

Google essentially continues to ignore the vast sea of issues with Android including lack of support.

Google Stores would have (possibly) effectively addressed the support issues.

What support issues? When Nexus One launched, Google thought it could sell directly to customers over the Internet without sales support from carriers, and support the thing using just email and web searches. For the "root-it-yourself" crowd. Stores and Genius Bars are for people who can't memorize the specs of every elite Android phone on the market. Google doesn't need stores. It's not their way.

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post #7 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Andy Rubin said in a roundtable at this week's Mobile World Congress that he feels there is no need for Google to create its own retail stores, according to All Things D. Rubin said customers no longer need to go into a store and "feel" products to make a decision, because most consumers talk to their friends and read reviews online.

Is that why Apple Stores are always packed? I have never ever been into an Apple Store when there was just a handful of customers.

post #8 of 39
I think they could sell product.

All they have to do is put those glowing reviews "the Verge" gives them of everything Google makes on a continuous video loop in the store.

The Verge even gave that POS "pixel" laptop 7.5 out of 10 and praised the "amazing" screen (despite admitting that it has huge problems scrolling, has bad touch sensors, is a non-standard size and adds little to the experience of using the laptop in the first place).

They should probably just have Josh run Google's marketing arm in fact.
post #9 of 39
It is hard to even imagine a google store. At least MS makes revenue on licenses. It isn't inconceivable that Google could work out deals with hardware partners to make some revenue on sales, but with the limited success that MS had (even with license revenue,) and the difficulties of Best Buy et al in the consumer electronics space, why would anyone be led to believe Google is working on this? Far more likely would be an AndroidMarket.com or some other applestore.com equivalent.
post #10 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacBook Pro View Post

Interesting.

Google essentially continues to ignore the vast sea of issues with Android including lack of support.

Google Stores would have (possibly) effectively addressed the support issues.

The deal breaker is that they would actually have to get a phone number.

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post #11 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by RobM View Post

Yea - I think they simply do not have enough products to justify the expense of going retail.
Staff, rents, insurance, training and all the rest - to sell what, a handful of products.
Better for them to stay Internet based - for now.

It doesn't help that the margins appear to be pretty slim, I think they're undercutting their OEMs.

I jokingly suggested they could operate a nationwide chain of kiosks. Then they could round out their products with accessories. Chargers, docks, cases and cables can be very profitable. By item count, I think half of an Apple Store's stocked items are third party accessories. Every device can mean maybe an average of three add-on items.

I think there's good value in trying it in person. Online reviews only do so much, and you have to know the reviewers to have an idea if they're willing to shade the truth with their biases. I generally don't buy completed electronics without trying it in person. Parts, yes, but finished products, no. Not only that, I don't recall reviews being available when their products

It's moot for me, I guess, because I'm not convinced that Google does enough to support their product. This response illustrates it, because you need to know someone that bought one blind, or be someone that's willing to buy it blind.
Edited by JeffDM - 2/26/13 at 12:25pm
post #12 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacBook Pro View Post

Interesting.

Google essentially continues to ignore the vast sea of issues with Android including lack of support.

Google Stores would have (possibly) effectively addressed the support issues.

No thanks. My photo, height, weight, and eye color would be added to the information Google already stores about me. I'll pass.
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post #13 of 39
"The head of Google's Android devision"

I think we have a new record: just one spelling mistake in an article.

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post #14 of 39
They'd probably know who you are before you'd step into their store. With all the data they have on you.
post #15 of 39

What a joke.

 

The whole culture of Google and their services is designed for zero direct interaction with customers. They will point you a link even if you get a chance to ever talk to a Google employee.

 

Plus, in this example having retail presence would make no financial sense. 

post #16 of 39
Just like when Schmidt said he doesn't think a phone should be a personal assistant like Siri. Google Voice is the same thing. Just like when they showed the Android phone to Apple showing it as a copy of the Blackberry, we have Droids of iPhones out today. Hmmm what else can we find where they lied?
post #17 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


No thanks. My photo, height, weight, and eye color would be added to the information Google already stores about me. I'll pass.

Bing already has it so no harm no foul.

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post #18 of 39
Quote:
Andy Rubin said in a roundtable at this week's Mobile World Congress that he feels there is no need for Google to create its own retail stores, according to All Things D. Rubin said customers no longer need to go into a store and "feel" products to make a decision, because most consumers talk to their friends and read reviews online.

 

One of the most idiotic and short-sighted things I've ever read. A massive part of Apple's success comes from it's retail stores- and the ability of people to "feel" the products, as Rubin states. To get their hands on them, use them, and fall in love with them, with a lax atmosphere and people around to answer questions. I'd never, ever buy a new portable device/gadget/phone/tablet/laptop before getting my hands on it first. 

post #19 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slurpy View Post

One of the most idiotic and short-sighted things I've ever read. A massive part of Apple's success comes from it's retail stores- and the ability of people to "feel" the products, as Rubin states. To get their hands on them, use them, and fall in love with them, with a lax atmosphere and people around to answer questions. I'd never, ever buy a new portable device/gadget/phone/tablet/laptop before getting my hands on it first. 
This actually works for Apple. Their products always have a feeling of quality. Can't have people coming in, picking up a plastic tablet and hearing it creak when it flexes in your hands.

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post #20 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slurpy View Post

Quote:
Andy Rubin said in a roundtable at this week's Mobile World Congress that he feels there is no need for Google to create its own retail stores, 
according to
 
All Things D
. Rubin said customers no longer need to go into a store and "feel" products to make a decision, because most consumers talk to their friends and read reviews online.

One of the most idiotic and short-sighted things I've ever read. A massive part of Apple's success comes from it's retail stores- and the ability of people to "feel" the products, as Rubin states. To get their hands on them, use them, and fall in love with them, with a lax atmosphere and people around to answer questions. I'd never, ever buy a new portable device/gadget/phone/tablet/laptop before getting my hands on it first. 

He doesn't come across as a very intelligent person, does he?

OT: why is this awful HTML formatting still in threads? It's a mess, and a hassle to clean up when replying! I still can't stand using the mobile version as the reply box is limited to just 5 lines of text. Huddler, please!
post #21 of 39
Quote:

They should probably just have Josh run Google's marketing arm in fact.

Precisely, you can bet there has been a very strategic and quite apparent consolidation and manipulation of media by Apple's competitors since Steve's death.  Control perception and you control reality.  It is very much in these guys best interest to propagate the meme that Apple has run its course and will flounder without its charismatic leader.

 

This is going to be a very interesting summer, however, because Apple is not done by a long shot.  I do think they have been caught off guard by so many companies essentially using Apple as their R&D department.

 

The show is not over... in fact, it's about to get really interesting.

post #22 of 39

Hey Phil, switch to the desktop version ! Button down the bottom.

Down the bottom of the page, I mean. Not yo.... 

post #23 of 39

The rumor of a Google store never made sense to me anyway.  Google doesn't really make a profit on handsets that they build (Nexus, etc).  Physical stores require a LOT of overhead.  Why would they have a store to peddle the Nexus lines and lose even more money?

 

Granted, there are many other Android/Chrome products, but the carriers do a great job pushing those.  I'm not a retail expert and I can't say what Google SHOULD do, but they'd be smarter to maybe open "mini sections" at Best Buy, Staples, Target, etc - a few employees specifically trained to answer Android/Chrome questions.  Sort of like the Target/Starbucks setup. Just my .02.

post #24 of 39

Google's new test mall for their store concept:  http://www.funnyordie.com/videos/cda7c7101d/chappelle-show-internet

post #25 of 39
What's Google's track record for keeping a statement they say. For instance, did they state that they weren't building a Chromebook Pixel after it was leaked weeks ago or say they weren't making their own line of phones?

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post #26 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheUnfetteredMind View Post

Google's new test mall for their store concept:  http://www.funnyordie.com/videos/cda7c7101d/chappelle-show-internet

ROFLMAO

post #27 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

I think they could sell product.

All they have to do is put those glowing reviews "the Verge" gives them of everything Google makes on a continuous video loop in the store.

The Verge even gave that POS "pixel" laptop 7.5 out of 10 and praised the "amazing" screen (despite admitting that it has huge problems scrolling, has bad touch sensors, is a non-standard size and adds little to the experience of using the laptop in the first place).

They should probably just have Josh run Google's marketing arm in fact.

They've never seen a screen like Pixel's. Rumor is that Apple might give the next MacBook Pro a "retina display" like Pixel. But that would just prove that Apple always copies Google, and no longer innovates.

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post #28 of 39

Yeah, Apple and others that have stores typically had a decent array of products to offer as well as third party hardware/software, etc.  And Apple has been successful doing this.

 

I'm sure as to Microsoft's success rate as they don't post any metrics to measure their successfulness, but Gateway didn't know how to do it very well, and anyone else hasn't been that successful.

 

Google might be able to sell a bunch of t-shirts, but they would be dumb if they opened up stores fronts to act like Apple.

post #29 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by drblank View Post


Google might be able to sell a bunch of t-shirts, but they would be dumb if they opened up stores fronts to act like Apple.

I could see the "I'm with stupid" shirts going over pretty well in there...
post #30 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by allenbf View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by drblank View Post

Google might be able to sell a bunch of t-shirts, but they would be dumb if they opened up stores fronts to act like Apple.
I could see the "I'm with stupid" shirts going over pretty well in there...

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"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

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post #31 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

"The head of Google's Android devision"

I think we have a new record: just one spelling mistake in an article.

No, it's not a spelling mistake.

Google has no vision. What's the opposite of 'vision'? 'DEvision'.
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post #32 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

"The head of Google's Android devision"

I think we have a new record: just one spelling mistake in an article.

No, it's not a spelling mistake.

Google has no vision. What's the opposite of 'vision'? 'DEvision'.

Good one! Do hope the trolls won't start replying, although that might make the thread even more funny.
post #33 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacBook Pro View Post

Interesting.

Google essentially continues to ignore the vast sea of issues with Android including lack of support.

Google Stores would have (possibly) effectively addressed the support issues.

 

Trouble is that carriers and hardware companies are allowed to tweak Android so its harder to support. 

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post #34 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post

Bing already has it so no harm no foul.

So you think 2 wrongs make a right then ?

post #35 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slurpy View Post

 

One of the most idiotic and short-sighted things I've ever read. A massive part of Apple's success comes from it's retail stores- and the ability of people to "feel" the products, as Rubin states. To get their hands on them, use them, and fall in love with them, with a lax atmosphere and people around to answer questions. I'd never, ever buy a new portable device/gadget/phone/tablet/laptop before getting my hands on it first. 

I agree, its like buying a car. Would you ask your friends or read the reviews on the Internet ? I would want to test drive it, not once but several times.

Rubin, as usual sprouts garbage when ever he opens his big fat ugly gob, just like the rest of the pricks at google.

post #36 of 39
Originally Posted by Wolfman View Post
Plus, in this example having retail presence would make no financial sense. 

 

If there was ever a reason for me to get behind Google building retail stores, this is it.

Originally posted by Marvin

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post #37 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by hfts View Post

So you think 2 wrongs make a right then ?

 

It's a diversion tactic. "pay no attention to what Google's doing! Look! Look! Look over here--pay attention to Bing! Bing is evil! So if Google does the same thing, Google is not evil."

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post #38 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by drblank View Post

Google might be able to sell a bunch of t-shirts, but they would be dumb if they opened up stores fronts to act like Apple.

 

Schmidt went to North Korea.

I think he wants a retail presence in Pyongyang's shopping district. They would have NO competition from Apple or Microsoft stores there, so they could film their next commercials there showing off the impressively long lines to get into the Google Store. All they have to do is offer UN Food Rations to every visitor when they launch the "X Phone" and the line will stretch for miles. (Hey, it's not like Microsoft has to offer people Miley Cyrus or Flo Rida tickets to get people to stand in line at the Microsoft Stores. Er, wait...)

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post #39 of 39
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

 

If there was ever a reason for me to get behind Google building retail stores, this is it.

 

No, this is it -->

 

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