First off, I understand that I'm looking at this from a different POV than someone buying a new machine in 1950 or something like that who just cares about it doing the job and being easy to maintain. My question is more whether the move to that finish was driven by consumers asking for it (maybe because it wouldn't show fingerprints or it's tougher), beancounters asking for it (presumably in this scenario it was less expensive to apply than japanning) or marketing asking for it (new look) or by something else that I'm not seeing.
Personally, I've tried to like it well enough to buy a White Rotary sporting it (in a decent cabinet) for $10 from the local Goodwill. I just couldn't do it. It wasn't even one of those oddly planar models, just the rounded neck into the rectangular head but with the crinkle finish.