Google's New Store Sounds More Like A Tourist Museum

Sergey brin googleGetty Images, Justin SullivanGoogle’s Sergey Brin wearing Glass

The space that Google is eyeing for its first-ever retail store in New York is about 8,000 square feet, sources say.

Realtors familiar with Google’s search say the store could go far beyond a typical retail outlet, reports Forbe’s Courtney Subramanian.

It could be more like a tourist destination tech museum, filled with ever-changing tech exhibits.

Sucharita Mulpuru, an analyst with market research firm Forrester Research, imagines that the store could be the Google museum on the East Coast much like the Google mystery barge is expected to be in the San Francisco Bay Area.

“Everyone is fascinated by the behind-the-scenes innovation showcases,” she says. “It’s like the equivalent of having the 60 Minutes announcement of the drone every few months.”

To be sure, Google has an increasing array of stuff to sell to consumers via a retail store: Android phones, Android tablets, a large variety of Chromebooks including Google’s own Pixel, a PC alternative called Chromebox, videoconferencing tools like Chromebox for Meetings, Google Glass and other Android wearables.

Yet, given the vast numbers of interesting tech projects that Google works on, the search giant certainly isn’t limited to a store that’s essentially an Apple store knockoff.

During our last visit to Google’s campus, we couldn’t help but notice that Google’s very headquarters had become a tourist attraction. We saw a lot of people wandering around taking photos.

It stands to reason that someone at Google noticed, too, and decided to give tourists more to look at, while letting them browse the tech that Google sells.

Exhibits could include all kinds of interesting things from Google’s research labs: self-driving cars, interactive billboards, 3D computing, artificial intelligence, sensor-based health care and the list goes on.

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