Design

Show Pony Vs. Workhorse: How Important Are Laptop Aesthetics To You?

Once the sole domain of Apple, the “luxury laptop” market has really kicked off in recent years, with most major vendors offering über shiny high-end models that place maximum emphasis on style. But does anyone actually care about laptop aesthetics, or is portability, functionality and battery life all that matters?

Earlier in the day, we took a look at the Toshiba KIRA; a 13.3in Windows 8 laptop that has been dubbed by its creators as an “aspirational” ultrabook. The launch event centered almost exclusively on the look and feel of the unit which is spearheaded by a ‘honeycomb-structured’ magnesium alloy chassis.

Here’s what Toshiba’s marketing bods have to say about the product:

Meaning ‘beam of light’, KIRA is the epitome of Japanese workmanship – every element designed and crafted with beautifully considered precision…Its construction, using the same magnesium alloy found in high-performance race cars, gives KIRA the edge when it comes to life in the fast lane. With its quiet beauty and unprecedented precision-engineering, KIRA Ultrabook propels luxury into a league of its own.

You’ll note that the actual computing specifications take a back seat here — it’s all about the sleek ‘n’ sexy surface. This got us wondering about whether anyone really cares about this stuff?

Obviously it’s nice to have an attractive piece of hardware, but is it something you actively seek out and are willing to pay a premium for? And when are laptop aesthetics more important — at home or at work? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.