For the past few years, I’ve been a huge fan of the LG Gram 17. It has great battery life, a huge screen, and it feels like it actually weighs nothing. But if there’s one hesitation I sometimes have about the line, it’s the aesthetic. The Grams of yesteryear just looked a little…boring. That’s fine – many laptops are – but also means there’s a fashion-conscious audience they might not be reaching.
Enter the LG Gram style. This is, as the name implies, arguably the first LG laptop I’ve ever seen that I’d really consider calling “classy.” It’s incredibly thin, amazingly light, and covered in a glossy color-shifting finish. My hands-on time with this device was in LG’s very dimly lit booth at CES 2023, but it was certainly one of the most unique-looking laptops I’ve had the pleasure of trying out so far this year.
That does not means this is a laptop that works for everyone. But it’s definitely one that draws attention in the coffee shop. And it’s a bold new look for an established line, which is always fun to watch unfold.
The first thing we talk about is that finish. It is iridescent and changes color depending on the lighting and viewing angle. In the words of LG, the laptops “shine and switch dynamically; move and change depending on the light and angle.”
Up close, this looks like a silver white. But I can confirm that as I moved the device, it flashed and drew in different shades, sometimes bluish and even orange. I wish I could have captured that better on camera – again, a challenge with the lighting.
That shine extends to the lower part of the Style’s keyboard, which is one smooth surface – no touchpad is visible. Over there is a touchpad below that, where you’d expect a touchpad, but it’s haptic and hidden.
We’re seeing more and more trackpads like this on laptops this year, and they’re generally helping companies make them thinner (which remains a big draw of the Gram line). Dell’s XPS 13 Plus also had a hidden touchpad last year, and I had mixed results with it. In general, my right hand (I’m right-handed) knew from experience where to click without needing to demarcate the touchpad, but my less experienced left hand misclicked here and there when it needed to step in.
What the Gram Style does have (which the XPS 13 Plus didn’t) are LEDs around the touchpad that light up after touching the area. They stay on for what can’t be more than a few seconds after you click, and then they disappear. So, I mean, that’s better than nothing, but it still doesn’t help you find the thing when you need to click it. The lights do look nice though. I’m not sure why there wouldn’t be an option to leave them on.
A third very nice thing: the screen. Each Style model (there are 14-inch and 16-inch options) has a 16:10 OLED display, and despite the odd lighting, they looked great in LG’s demo room. The keyboard was nice too, with quite a nice click. I generally like Gram keyboards, but there’s always the concern that a super-thin laptop might not have room for great switches.
Oh, and this thing is So light. It’s one of those devices that messes with your mind when you pick it up. Weighing in at 999 grams, you could fool me into thinking this was an empty chassis. That’s nothing new for LG laptops, but it’s a nice assurance that the Style, despite its various quirks, remains a big part of the Gram line.
Another hot tip: Even wilder designs are coming. LG had a bunch of patterned Gram Style lids on display — purple, pink, polka dots galore — and held a poll at their booth for attendees to vote for their favorite. Representatives claim that the company will market the winner. I voted for the purple one, so I hope it wins. Stay tuned.
Photography by Monica Chin / The Verge