I recently bought a Retina Macbookpro and want to make sure I can keep it in good condition in the event I need to sell it in the future. Assuming the keyboard is not much different from the integrated keyboards of other computers in the product line; do you think I should buy a keyboard cover? It's not the type of thing I really want, but if it means avoiding wear on the keys' texture, I'll have to go for that. I know that the keyboards are back-lit, but do any of you with Macbooks or apple keyboards experience significant degradation of the keys into that oily look?
I own a late 2008 aluminum MacBook unibody machine, and I use it daily. There's no real "degradation" of the keys, though there's one smooth "polished" spot on the right of my spacebar, due to heavy use.
I don't think you have anything to worry about. It's a laptop, the keyboard is meant to be used.
The “oily look” to which you refer is, more often than not, literally a coating of finger grease on the keys that can be cleaned off. It turns out that those Mr Clean Magic Erasers work pretty well for removing grease. Actual wear on the surface of the keys is less common, unless you type with abrasive gloves or your fingernails; even then, the keys should be fine for at least a decade, as my good old first-generation MacBook can attest. Probably the best reason to buy a keyboard cover is to protect the keyboard from dirt, foodstuffs, and whatever else might get underneath the keys. If you clean your keyboard and take good care of it, it shouldn’t decrease resale value. Just don’t clean your keys so obsessively you wear them out.