Google Works on Launching Retail Stores

Google Inc. has been developing plans to launch retail stores in the U.S., said people familiar with the matter, in another sign the company is studying Apple Inc.’s playbook for building a consumer-electronics brand.

The stores would likely sell Google-branded hardware, these people said. But it isn’t clear when or where any stores would open, and one of the people said the Internet giant might not move forward with the plan this year.

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