Earlier this week I visited Samsung’s new ‘store’ in the trendy new Coal Drops Yard development near King’s Cross, aptly named ‘Samsung KX’.
Except it isn’t really a store because you won’t find anyone trying to sell you anything.
In fact, the only things with prices on show are the food and drink at Samsung’s own coffee shop.
This is an experience store, to showcase a range of Samsung products from mobile and TV, to Internet-enabled fridge freezers and Samsung accessories.
The idea is simple; Come in and play, familiarise yourself with Samsung products, then buy later.
That’s not to say you can’t buy something if you really want, but anything you purchase will be processed online with the product sent to you. Nothing is held in stock here.
You’ll also find concept designs, and a cool meeting room where the windows can be switched from clear to opaque at the press of a button. It’s called the James Bond room, apparently.
I rather suspect it’s a way for staff to hide away when on a break. Talking of staff, there are loads of them. You may not be pressured to buy anything, but you will absolutely be encouraged to try things out and have fun.
Although the store is already open to the public, the official grand opening will take place on September 3rd. With IFA coming up and Samsung set to announce new products, you’re quite likely going to see some of it appearing in Samsung KX soon after.
The Galaxy Note 10 and Note 10+ are already on display, ahead of its on-sale date this Friday.
Within the open area is a huge screen with seating for events. Upcoming events include handset masterclasses, such as a S10 Travel class where you can learn how to get the most from your Galaxy S10 camera when travelling. There’s seating for 30 people, so these classes will be very personal and ticketed (you can book tickets via Samsung’s website).
The space can also be hired for use by other companies for their own sessions. I am sure even Samsung hasn’t yet worked out exactly what the space will be used for, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see it used for private events and launches in the months ahead.
When not being used for an event or masterclass, the wall can be sprayed with digital graffiti using specially adapted Galaxy S10’s.
The virtual spray cans even make a spraying sound, so you can feel really good about being bad (even if you’re not going to get in trouble, as long as you keep your artwork clean and inoffensive).
If you already own a Samsung phone, you can create a custom case for your phone, while also checking out the range of AKG audio products in the comfort of a chair, enjoying music from a custom Spotify playlist running on a range of Samsung phones and tablets.
Over at the coffee shop, you’ll find somewhere to whip out your laptop and enjoy the free Wi-Fi and power facilities to get some work done.
I was assured that Samsung has no problem with you coming in to ‘hot desk’, although that might change if it suddenly turns into a Regus alternative.
Samsung KX is open until 10pm, making it a perfect place to visit before a night out in Coal Drop’s Yard or the nearby Granary Square.
The whole area is rapidly becoming an alternative destination to the likes of Soho and Shoreditch, although even if Samsung doesn’t directly want to take your money, there are plenty of other places nearby that will.
More info: Samsung KX