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Google is testing a virtual genius bar service

tech reviews Updated: Feb 09, 2015 16:22 IST

Google is trialling a new feature within the Google Play store that links confused consumers with experts via a free video call.

However, helping handset owners troubleshoot their devices and sort out apps is just the start, because eventually, the company wants to expand the service well beyond its own web properties.

According to TechCrunch's sources, this expansion would include retail spaces so that consumers could experience a virtual version of Apple's Genius Bar concept.

When asked by the publication, Google wouldn't be drawn on the future direction of the feature, but did confirm that the service does indeed exist and is at an experimental stage.

"We're always improving features to help our users," said a spokesperson. "We're in a limited trial of an experimental support feature and gathering feedback, so we aren't ready to share full plans yet."

If you want to test it for yourself, head over to the ‘devices' section of the Google Play store between 6am and 6pm Pacific time and have a video chat with an expert about a smartphone, tablet or Chromebook.