Google opened what they’re calling their “little corner shop” in Soho this past week. I checked it out on Thursday and LOVED it.
- The design is fabulous – warm, welcoming, very Scandinavian minimal -and a tad quirky. In other words, not at all like either Apple or Samsung. Instead of glass and metal and other hardedge techie elements, Google has gone in a diametrically different direction: It’s warm, homey, lots of plywood, white walls, pops of color e.g. pixel wall and art installations by Faile. It’s obvious no expense has been spared in creating this “little corner shop.”
- The staffing is terrific – everyone from in-store product demonstrators to security are on point. They’ve even added a coffee truck on Mercer Street (the Peddlar) to provide free coffee and tea for those waiting in line.
- The products and the immersive, experiential aspects are super cool. I was particularly impressed with the new Pixel phones and the home products. I had just received my new iPhone 7Plus that day and must admit to Pixel envy. What I especially like about the Google phone is the ability to search for your photos without tagging them. The Google Home devices, way more gorgeous than Amazon’s Alexa, are supposedly more attuned to human language BUT our experience with it was a bit of a bust. However, based on how intuitive everything else from Google is these days e.g. google maps, I have a lot of confidence that Google Home will get it together and be amazing. (Google and Amazon are starting to be like Apple and Microsoft in my opinion – Google is about great design and consumer experience while Amazon is a computing behemoth with less interest in beauty and design.)
The Google pop up is at 96 Spring Street (near Mercer) until December 29.
See more pictures below as well as 5 more examples of notable retail trends.