It’s time for another Gadget Guru blast from the past! This time, I’ll take you back 30 years to 1992 when I hosted a promotional video for Incredible Universe. Calling this store a superstore is an understatement as it was six times larger than its competition. I’ll also show you the hot home theater products of that era.
In case you’re not familiar, the 17 Incredible Universe stores were the largest electronics and appliance stores in the USA, if not the world. It was created by the Tandy Corporation, the parent company of Radio Shack to compete against big box retailers such as Circuit City and Best Buy. To provide a bit of perspective, an Incredible Universe store was 180,000 square feet…six times larger than its competitors. To put a timeframe on this, the first Incredible Universe store opened two years prior to Amazon selling its first book online. Visiting an Incredible Universe store was an event and, the store was so large, it required a map to get around.
Other than its sheer size, what set Incredible Universe apart from others was the sheer assortment of electronics on display. While other stores would cherry pick a manufacturer’s lineup and have limited models on display, Incredible Universe stocked every item offered by its vendors. The assortment of products was amazing.
So, why am I talking about Incredible Universe? Well, you can thank the TV show Young Sheldon for my renewed interest in Incredible Universe. Viewers of this show know that one of his pleasures was hanging out at the local Radio Shack. On a recent episode of Young Sheldon he came into some cash and as a shareholder, called the company to provide some input on creating a mega superstore.