Samsung tests Genius Bar-like 'care centers' in co-working spaces

The company is piloting "care centers" in three WeWork locations in the US.

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Chris Velazco/Engadget
Chris Velazco/Engadget

If you've ever spent too much time waiting at an Apple Genius Bar to get your gadget fixed, you know that it can be a pretty boring, sterile moment. There just isn't much to do there, besides checking out Apple Watch bands on your wrist, or trying to find out which set of Beats sound better. Samsung's VP of design, Mick McConnell, felt the same way, but he actually got to do something about it. The electronics company is piloting a program at co-working space WeWorks to let people come in to get help with their Samsung devices. That way, you can get some work done at the various stations while you wait.

WeWork spots function as shared office environments; Samsung has placed new "care centers" at three locations in Detroit, Miami and Williamsburg, New York, according to a report at Fast Company. "Service is a hassle," McConnell told the site. "I know I'm going to have to take time out of my day to do it," says McConnell. "The concept was, if I take time out of my day, at least I can sit in a conference room, make phone calls, and do work, as opposed to sitting in a busy room with a bunch of angry people."

According to Fast Company, the new Samsung areas are an enclosed "black steel and glass box," complete with tables and workstations. The other areas are more like typical WeWork spaces, with high-end office furnishings and video conferencing stations. It's a win-win for Samsung, as professionals needing co-working space will be exposed to the brand will mingle with customers needing tech help feeling a lot better about the experience than, say, Apple retail attendees are. So far, said Fast Company, customers are only able to receive tier 1 support, like technical help and mail-out repairs. Unlike the Genius Bar, then, tier 2 support, like replacing screens or hard drives, isn't yet in the mix.

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