Samsung Apes Apple With Store-In-A-Store

Samsung has borrowed a leaf out of Apple's retail guidebook, announcing a deal with UK handset merchants Phones 4u to put a special Samsung-branded store inside its flagship London location. The new concession will open on Friday this week, and offer what's promised to be the largest range of working Samsung demo hardware available to the public. Meanwhile, Samsung and Phones 4u have apparently been coaching staff to levels of Samsung enthusiasm that presumably match Apple retail fervor.

The store-in-a-store will have three demo tables with the latest smartphones and tablets from Samsung, along with a demonstration area for some of the trickier to explain ideas, like AllShare. Dedicated displays will be used to demo the DLNA streaming, among other things.

In fact, all of Samsung's range of handsets – from the highest-end contract device to the lowliest prepay phone – will supposedly be on-hand and functional. Phones 4u has also inked a deal with Samsung to hold future launch events at the location.

Apple has made great use of the store-in-a-store concept, staking out a little slab of Cupertino-style minimalism and branding at Best Buy, Walmart and other locations across the US and abroad. The distinctive mini-locations offer a hub that keeps Apple hardware distinct from the mass of Windows-based PCs and notebooks, as well as focusing more attention on the individual brand.

It's unsurprising, then, that Samsung would like to chase a little of that attention itself. The challenge will be getting sales staff to promote Samsung devices as enthusiastically as they do the iPhone – something Nokia and Microsoft also face as they attempt to drive Windows Phone adoption.