Laptops For the Fashion Conscious

Ever get bored with the shape of your laptop? Ever think, “Gee, I wish that this standard sized, slate grey rectangle could be a little funkier, a little sassier, and perhaps even a little sexier?” If you have, then Ego Lifestyle is the company for you. The designers at Ego were tired of the same laptop style that has been around for the last 20-odd years. “Look at the cars we had 20 years ago compared with the cars we have today,” says Jeroen de Punder, managing director of Ego Lifestyle. “They look completely different, but notebooks are all specs and techs.” He adds that because notebooks work fine, no one questions the way they look. The matter may seem a trivial one to many laptop users, but for the aesthetically inclined, Ego’s unique laptop designs are like a gift from heaven.

Ego’s first foray into fashionable laptops resulted in a round number that was remarkably similar to Apple’s clamshell iBook. It had large rounded edges and a carry handle built around the hinge. Ego had to design its own circuit boards to fit into the round design, and added four speakers and a subwoofer behind the screen. To complete the package, the machine came with interchangeable skins, so that the exterior could be changed at will.

Since then, Ego, in conjunction with Tulip, has brought out a Love Edition laptop, designed specifically with Valentine’s Day in mind. The distinctively round casing is pale red (other colours are available) and boasts a stitched red heart in the middle, it also has a lovely red ribbon on the handle, complete with a heart shaped pendent. But the fun doesn’t stop there. They have released a 6-figure ($355,000, £179,583 or R2.6 million) diamond-encrusted model, as well as a Bentley model that was inspired by the legendary British car. Ego launched its Bentley laptop at the British Motor Show in July this year, it features authentic Bentley cross-over hand-stitching in the same colour schemes as the cars. The carry handle even resembles the car’s door handle.

The Bentley model is significantly cheaper than the diamond-encrusted one, but at £10,000 ($19,768 or R144,345), it’s still priced beyond the reach of average Joe. But Ego Lifestyle isn’t about the average Joe; it’s about being elite and ostentatious. De Punder says that their target market are the “technofashionistas” of the world, those who are interested in fashion, design and technology, and who presumably have more money than they know what to do with. Their initial design cost around $3,975 (£2,010 or R29,025), while in 2006, its “entry level model” came in at $5,000 (£2.529 or R36,509).

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