After investing $6 million in refurbishing and setting up its first-ever brick and mortar store in New York City, Google backs down.

Reports show that the company looks to lease the 5,442-square-foot space, located in the posh neighborhood SoHo. According to sources familiar with the situation, the company expects up to $2.25 million per year in rent revenue.

The 131 Greene St. store was intended to rival the Apple Store, which is located about a block away. No sooner than last week, Microsoft inaugurated its flagship store in New York as well, albeit on Fifth Avenue.

As Crain's reports, the store was designed with two things in mind: smartphones and Chromebooks. The search engine company reportedly wanted to promote and sell devices based on its operating systems, namely Chromebooks and Android smartphones, in a physical retail location. Chromebooks are a line of desktop and notebook computers that operate on Chromium, the proprietary software crafted by Google.

While it seems that Google got cold feet when it comes to opening up a full-sized retail store, the company did launch a kiosk earlier this year, in London. That kiosk operates within another store, but this NYC shop was supposed to be Google's first retail store on its own.

Google put a lot of effort and resources into the 131 Greene St. space to transform it into a concept retail store. The ground floor got some modifications so that the rear area offers a special, ritualistic-like atmosphere. The glass skylights and large windows make a statement about transparency and could be read as a metaphor for data flow. The interior designers paid homage to the historical building by exposing and preserving its steel beams, alongside the brick walls and columns.

The access from the street received small modifications so that clients find the entrance more inviting.

"This is going to be a space for a brand at the top of their field," Michael Glanzberg, from Sinvin Real Estate, declared.

According to Glanzberg, the rent of $450/square foot is not uncommon for the ritzy shops that populate the Greene Street. Although the route was formerly one of the quiet areas of SoHo, the blooming presence of luxury brands such as Tiffany, Louis Vuitton and Dior turned it into a busy shopping district.

It is unclear if Google renounced the idea of having a real store or just plans to open up in a surprise location. As far as marketing strategy goes, big names in the tech industry are moving closer to the old-fashioned street commerce. For example, Amazon just opened a bookstore in Seattle.

It remains to be seen whether Google will stick with the general trend or not, but for now it seems to have ditched plans for a full-size retail store.

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