Helio's snazzy store

Helio shows its stuff at its retail locations.

Kent German Former senior managing editor / features
Kent was a senior managing editor at CNET News. A veteran of CNET since 2003, he reviewed the first iPhone and worked in both the London and San Francisco offices. When not working, he's planning his next vacation, walking his dog or watching planes land at the airport (yes, really).
Kent German
Helio on display Kent German/CNET Networks

While visiting family in Palo Alto last weekend, I came upon a Helio store on the city's main shopping street, University Avenue. I knew the youth-centric MVNO carrier opened four stores in California and Colorado, but this was my first chance to visit one of the locations. I couldn't snap pictures inside, but like the carrier's corporate image, the store's interior was flashy, slick, and comfortable. There were lounge chairs, the staff was quite attentive, and the phones were featured in interactive display cases. My 6-year-old nephew was decidedly unimpressed until I showed him the dual-sliding action on the Helio Ocean. He promptly dropped his request to play hide-and-seek and was captivated.