Samsung today rolled up the shutters on its second "experience store" in Australia, just 24 hours before the New York reveal of the hotly anticipated Galaxy S4 smartphone. The new store opened in the Highpoint Shopping Centre in Melbourne.
Similar to the original Samsung store in Sydney, the Highpoint location offers Samsung fans and the curious a place where they can try a range of Samsung's latest mobile products.
"After we opened the store in Sydney we heard through our social media from people in Melbourne asking when we would open a store in Melbourne," says Samsung Australia's Tyler McGee.
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Samsung's store opening coincides with the opening of a new wing in the Highpoint Shopping Centre in Maribyrnong, north of the Melbourne CBD.
Room to move
It is a much larger store in Melbourne too, giving Samsung room to showcase far more products from each of its consumer electronic categories. Besides phones and tablets, customers at the store can get hands-on demos with TVs, cameras, notebooks and a range of accessories.
There is also an education pod, showcasing some of the learning-friendly apps and books available for Galaxy Tabs, and the 'Samsung Studio', where customers can have a photo taken and printed on a mug as a souvenir.
To make this opening more enticing, Samsung has the new 8-inch Galaxy Note on display in the store. Announced at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, this model represents the middle-ground in size between Samsung previous tablets, but one that pits it head-to-head with Apple's 7.9-inch iPad Mini.
Though smaller in size, the Galaxy Note 8.0 features comparably powerful hardware to the bigger Galaxy Note 10.1, with a 1.6Ghz quad-core processor and 2GB RAM. It also comes with the Samsung S-Pen accessory for creating handwritten notes and sketches on the tablet.
All of the products on display in the "experience store" are available to buy directly from Samsung, though Samsung's adherence to its own RRP on products isn't like to have the cash registers ringing too often.
Especially with competitors like JB Hi-Fi and Dick Smith in the same shopping complex, selling the same stuff at a discount.