Amidst the chaos of job vacancies, promotions and bank statements, an Indiblogger mail is a pleasant sight for sore eyes (and my inbox). This one in particular involved going to Colaba (aka the land of shopping) to check out the UniverCell showroom. That’s pretty much all I knew about the place until I got there. But I was in for a ‘Tech-sperience’ as they call it. Now whether that ‘Tech-sperience’ was good, bad or ugly, you’ll find out soon enough!
Being the latecomers that we are, us three friends reached the showroom in the nick of time. Located smartly in the same avenue as Regal Cinema, the rare ATM, and the chat-hub CCD; we walked into the showroom that had a minimalistic aura surrounding it.
We were welcomed by the store manager Tanvir (hope I got that right) and he took us through a tour of the store.
As you enter, the first section to your right would be the latest smartphones and tabs to hit the market. What I personally loved about the store was the cell phones were classified on the basis of the consumer needs and not the brands. So if you’re into photography there’s a section for phones that are just that. And similarly, a section for music lovers where all the top devices were accompanied by their relevant accessories. My favourite section of them all was the section for business-centric devices (they were power-houses, man!) There were also sections for the ‘trending’ phones and best-sellers (for those who follow the crowd). Apart from that there were two sections for tabs as well. One for the budget tablets and one special desk for the an intel powered tablet pc.
Show me the money (No literally!)
One thing we noticed was the lack of price tags on the smartphones, they had a description of the phone and the basic features. I say basic because there was no mention of the RAM or the chipset of the devices (which smartphone-lovers can’t live without knowing). The lack of price tags is probably keeping in mind the niche behaviour of the South Bombay crowd that reside there. Not sure about the detailed descriptions though. Maybe this is a smart ploy of the UniverCell ‘brain-trust’ to make sure every walk-in has to speak to the sales people in the store. When asked about the pricing in general, the store manager told us it’s in line with the competition, not the e-retailers of course, they have a different pricing strategy altogether!
As the tour continued we went deeper into the store (physically and aesthetically), we also spent some time around the billing and customer care section of the store. There were SIM cards and charging accessories around that zone and also a help desk, where the manager said, the users are given a download on all the apps they should have on their phone and all the troubleshooting for the existing customers are also taken care by the person there.
Woah what’s that?
As we were given a moment to ourselves by the manager, we overheard a chat between two guys of which one was claiming ‘Arre par mera toh nuksaan ho gaya na…‘ (I suffered a loss, no!) But the guy didn’t seem to be a customer as he too was on the non-customer side of the table. (He probably was a staff-member or a vendor) Though it managed to get our attention it was not of much substance (Unless making mountains out of molehills is one’s favourite pass-time)
Very rarely have I ever entered a place where I couldn’t afford most of the cool things and yet I’ve been like .
But the nice store manager person Tanveer (I really do hope I’m not getting it wrong) introduced us to the mother of all after-sales-services.
The Univercell Total Care.
For a minimal amount above the smartphone you purchase… (say you purchase a 10k smartphone, so the optional service would cost you an extra 800Rs.) … Univercell would insure your device for a year and cover all accidental and incidental damage to the device. This includes water and drop damages as well as no extra cost. And not only that, the cool people from the store would drop by your doorstep and pick up the device and deliver it back once it’s fixed! So if you’re lazy and clumsy or just plain ol’ unlucky, this deal is perfect for you.
As we re-aligned our jaws back to our faces, we were told that this service (if needed) could be claimed multiple times in the year, which means the very clumsy ones too can breathe easy. If you wanna club in ‘theft protection’ as well then you need to add a few extra bucks to the package.
As the tour ended we dilly-dallied around and checked out some devices and clicked relevant (and irrelevant) pictures.
The click-section is a fun touch I must say.
So narrowing it all down to…
- Great after sales options
- Need-based classification
- User-friendly showroom
- Friendly staff (courtesy the cool dude who gave us a demo of the Philips Soundshooter speakers (which should be renamed as sound-grenade for obvious reasons) and Tanvir of course!
- No detailed specification of the products
- Limited options for budget phones
Overall, if you know which device you want, you must check out this place and pick it up from there, just for the after-sales options. I’ll surely be keeping this place in mind when I purchase my next phone (whenever my wallet allows me to that is). As a closing word, I must say I was (Univer-)sold by this ‘tech-sy‘ store. Signing out now! Thanks for reading.