I know Europeans use the styro hives a lot--and they are in the catalogs here. I can't bring myself to try them, though. One of my favorite things about beekeeping is that it is, for the most part, thrillingly low-tech. As someone who manages a college's email systems, I'm happy to come home to something without a keyboard, made of actual wood. It's the same reason I wouldn't use a bee blower, even though it would save time. The noise!
I know, I'm being old-fashioned, but I love wood, its color, its smell, the way it feels.