Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Winter Wonderlab

Google wants to stand out from the competition during the upcoming holiday season, and in the real world, not just the virtual one. Even Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) has gotten the real-world bug and is opening temporary or "pop-up" stores for the season, including an exposed brick-walled outpost in NoLita, a hipster enclave of New York City.
Google has just announced it will open "Winter Wonderlab" showrooms in six cities across the US. They are designed as "play zones" stocked with Google-branded toys like Nexus 7 phones and Chromebook tablets. (Fans are already griping about the apparent omission of a Google Glass display.)These are not cash-and-carry stores, though products can be ordered there for home delivery. Each will feature a giant walk-in snow globe that can be used as a setting for slow-motion videos to take home.
The Google barge does not seem destined to be a Winter Wonderlab, at least not this winter. However, the mystery barge may well be more of the same concept on a grander and more ambitious scale.