These days, with the wealth of awesome technology making our lives faster, more convenient, and definitely more entertaining, we are all pretty much big kids playing with toys at any given moment. Smartphones, Bluetooth speakers, fitness wearables; we love our gadgets and we want more.

From listening to tunes, to tracking our fitness, to monitoring our homes; there’s no denying that our smartphones have become so much more than a one-to-one communication device, and are constantly changing the way we connect to the world everyday.

So when we learned that Toronto’s Eaton Center got itself a brand-new concept store that not only sells these toys, but actually let's us play with them too, our inner child jumped for joy!

Just like those trips to the toy store when we were kids, the TELUS Connected Experience Store is a playground where you can touch, test and play with more than 1,000 specially curated mobile devices, accessories, and gadgets (hello, drone!). It has turned the typical retail experience on its head, making it actually fun to shop for tech again.

Been trying to decide between a new Bluetooth speaker, but just don't know which one is right for you? Simply select a music genre and listen to your favourite new track on the Beats Pill and JBL Flip 3 portable speaker. Your ears can do the choosing at the interactive sound bar.

Decided that 2016 is the year you get on top of your health? Did you know that 20% of Canadians planned on buying a wearable last year, while one-third of consumers stopped using them within six months? What would be useful is a way to tangibly measure your physical output during daily activities and find ways to enhance it.

Let TELUS Learning Centre Experts show you exactly how to get a more connected approach to your fitness goals by demoing the latest in fitness wearables live. Learning Centre Experts guide you from the start to finish, helping you select the right tech and help you understand how to analyse the data your new accessory tracks, so you get motivated.

Want to really geek out? The Connected Experience Store has also got all the coolest tech toys, from smartphone-controlled cars to back-flipping robots, just begging to be played with.

On top of that, there are dozens of free, secure charging stations, so you never have to worry about your device dying while you’re out and about shopping.

As someone who loves playing with gadgets myself, a store that actually lets me try before I buy at this scale is pretty revolutionary. Only problem is: I went in to look at upgrades for my phone, and and ended up spending a good hour there, learning about automating my home, getting healthier using wearables, and playing with the new Star Wars BB-8 Droid a little too much.

If this is what the future of shopping looks like, then the future really is friendly.

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