Samsung has opened a new retail store in Vancouver, Canada which is receiving a lot of criticism for bearing resemblance to the Apple Store. The new store was opened at the Metrotown Mall in Burnaby, Vancouver. The new Samsung Retail Store is said to be the first of its kind in North America. The store displays Samsung’s popular devices, though we’re not sure if they sell the entire range of consumer electronics. This new store however hasn’t gone down well with Apple fans, claiming that it’s “ripped off” from Apple’s consumer retail stores. At first glance, one would realize that they do have valid points. The white background, the furniture, the blue uniforms for the employees etc.
You can walk into a range of electronics stores around the world, and the chances are that most of them will have a white background. And why is that you might ask. Well, products which have a darker color appear strikingly well on a white background, that’s just how it is. So more and more retailers (including Apple) want to make their products look appealing to the consumer, hence justifying the decision to go with white or a sub-color of white. To call this a rip-off of another electronics retailer would be an overstatement to say the least.
Now for the second and pivotal accusation, the dark blue uniforms of the store employees. Well, people are widely familiar with the Samsung logo. And which color is it? That’s right, dark blue. And as far as I remember, Samsung reps have been wearing the dark blue outfit for ages. Maybe since there aren’t a lot of Samsung retail stores, people are a little surprised. To be frank, Samsung probably has a bigger reason to use that particular color than Apple does, but then again, the timing just doesn’t seem alright.
The furniture used in the store, again, is how most retailers are used to selling their devices. The point is that no retailer would want to display products in an unattractive fashion. The idea is to make the products as interesting and good looking as possible, that’s basically how the retail stores function. So white colored lights or a white background is what most retailers will use. We recently saw Microsoft open its stores which was also very similar to Apple Stores and went through its share of criticism. What strikes as surprising to me is how people jumped to conclusions almost immediately.
Cards on the table, I am no fanboy, but this just goes a little beyond that. The whole Apple/Samsung issue has been heavily debated over the past few years. Right from the allegations of Samsung copying the design of the Apple iPhone with the Galaxy S, there has been no stop to the legal tussle between the two companies. I will agree that the universal home button on the device was a little too similar to the one on the iPhone 3G/3GS. But Samsung clearly has evolved past that and now we have an entirely different looking Galaxy S III. The rectangular shape is almost gone and we have different looking devices now.
Claims of Samsung being unoriginal and “copy cats” are all over the internet. In all fairness, its recent smartphone the Galaxy S III isn’t going to win design awards. However, the issue we have here is completely different and it wouldn’t suffice to say that an entire store was copied from Apple. If that was the case, most major retailers in the world have copied their store’s color scheme from Apple. A walk to your nearest retailer will give you the idea of what I’m talking about here. I personally feel the confusion created here is with regards to the employee uniform more than anything. One thing’s for sure though, Samsung wouldn’t have expected a reaction like this to one of its premium stores. We won’t call this a major setback like the ban of the Galaxy Nexus or the Tab 10.1, but this will certainly grab Samsung’s attention.
The new accusations coming from the Apple fans however are too trivial to pay heed to. It will be interesting to see if Apple or Samsung have anything to say about this or if their opinions will be voiced and divided like the rest of the Android-iOS debate.
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