The first of Google’s foray into the world of physical retail in the UK has opened in a branch of Currys and PC World on London’s ‘gadget street’, the Tottenham Court Road.
This new Chrome Zone is being seen as part of a direct response to Apple, but is relatively low key in its style.
The idea is to increase the awareness amongst the public about the Samsung ‘Chromebook’ laptop, which runs on Google’s own operating system, by letting people experience them physically.
“Many things in life, like football and rock music, are best experienced in person. Chromebooks are no exception,” said the official Chrome blog detailing the news.
This first outlet is expected to run until December to see how it pans out, but there are plans to open more Chrome Zones throughout the country if it proves to be a success.
There are already Chrome Zones in several US airports, which allow you to borrow and assess a Chromebook for the duration of a flight with Virgin America.
This is just how Microsoft opened up its retail game in 2009, by opening ‘Microsoft Stores’ in retail outlets coinciding with the release of Microsoft 7. Microsoft now has 14 of these stores.
Although this is just an experiment for now we could well see more of them opened up in computer stores across the country if the Samsung Chromebook takes off.