Forget the debate about whether you should put your smartphone in a case. The Laptop Strap wants to replace supposedly bulky laptop bags and backpacks with what is essentially a camera strap for naked, unprotected computers.
I completely understand why some smartphone users shun protective cases for their devices. Companies like Apple spend a lot of time perfecting the look and feel of their hardware, and to some, cramming it into a cheap plastic case is like tossing a trench coat onto Michelangelo’s sculpture of David. But those people are wrong, and probably have an extreme tolerance for nicks, scratches, and cracked screens. I do not. I not only keep my smartphone in a folio-style case with a flip-over screen cover, I also faithfully use a screen protector, too.
That’s probably why the general idea of the Laptop Strap is so completely horrifying to me. Even with a body made from aluminium that closes up to protect the screen and keyboard, I view my MacBook Pro as being far more delicate and fragile than my smartphone. And when I travel — even if it’s just leaving the house to visit a coffee shop — it’s protected in both a padded sleeve and a backpack.
For minimalists, daredevils, or whatever the heck you want to call yourselves, the Laptop Strap lets your laptop travel free and easy. It attaches to your machine like a camera strap, but since laptops don’t have built-in connection points, the Laptop Strap relies on an adhesive flap that wraps around your computer’s hinge so it can still be opened and used with the flap attached.
The creators of the Laptop Strap claim the flap and the non-permanent adhesives it uses to attach to your hardware have been “lab-tested to 114 lbs of pull-strength.” We’re currently not aware of any 100+ lbs laptops currently on the market, and the sizing chart on the company’s website seems to indicate the accessory will work on everything from MacBooks to Chromebooks to Surface machines.
Pricing for the flap plus a strap (available in four different sizes and three different colours) is $US40 ($56) no matter what option you choose. But you might want to budget for some hardware insurance like AppleCare, if you choose to go this route. I don’t use a smartphone case because I like the look of it, I use a case because accidents happen, and modern hardware is notoriously hard and expensive to repair. I can see the benefit of being able to just slam your laptop’s lid closed and then throwing it over your shoulder before bolting, and I have no reason to doubt the Laptop Strap will hold it securely; it’s all the other uncontrollable factors in the world I would stress about. So for me, it’s a hard pass.