Nobody ever goes around without at least one gadget in hand anymore. Whether it's a mobile phone, an tablet, a laptop or all of the above, the digital era means staying connected and powered up at all times. Unfortunately, manufacturers still haven't figured out how to make gadgets last for days on end while being used almost 24/7. This is why in today's techie world, the modern man and woman have turned to the smart charging backpack.
Smart charging backpacks are fitted with cool features that get power from the sun to charge your gadgets. They're also capable of charging through a power outlet if there's one conveniently around. Smart charging backpacks are popular with business folks nowadays, ditching the traditionally boring briefcase and opting a super sleek smart backpack.
Of course, travelers will make the most out of smart charging backpacks. While powerbanks can be useful, they also have a limited life. It's also inconvenient to carry around if you already have a lot of stuff with you.
To help you travel better, here are some of the best smart charging backpacks.
Backpacks come in different materials. Some are water-resistant, some are not. Some are more capable of managing overheating gadgets as well. Look for sturdy materials that will help protect your gadgets even with a lot of movement.
It's easy to assume that every smart backpack comes with everything you need to keep your gadgets charged. They don't. Make sure you know what's included with the bag, and more importantly, what is not (like the powerbank itself).
Is it solar-powered? Do you have to plug it in? If you're not spending too much time outdoors, there's little need for a solar panel backpack. Also make sure the battery pack has enough juice to power your gadgets for as long as you will be away from a power source. Running out of juice on the go is a horrible situation to be in!
The ECEEN Hiking Daypack Backpack is perfect for outdoor activities. It has an attachment with 3.5-watt solar panel that charges its built-in 2,000 mAh waterproof Li-Polymer battery pack. The solar cells are encased in a protective anti-scratch hardened coating sewn into high-wear PVC fabric for weather-resistance. The battery can also be charged through a computer or a power outlet.
The panel attachment can be flipped over to expose LED chips. It's an excellent source of light in the middle of nowhere or can be used to create signals in case of emergency.
The design is simple and stylish and will totally work well as a regular everyday bag. The solar panels are detachable. It's light and just the right size for a day bag, ideal for simply walking around the city with a portable charger.
The shoulder straps are wide and thick and relatively comfortable, but it doesn't come with much other support such as sternum straps or waist straps. At the same time, if you're expecting the battery pack to keep every gadget charged, this may not be the backpack for you. The battery capacity is only good for one full charge on a mobile phone, and you'll need to wait for the solar panels to charge it up again.
The HP Powerup Backpack is a smart charging backpack with a few extra smarts. It has an impressive 24,000mAh battery - the biggest capacity by far from all the great options on this list. It's compatible with most HP laptops for a full charge, but will be able to charge your smartphone up to 10 times and your tablet 3 times. All this charging power is expertly managed and organized through cable loops, compartments, and slots designed into the bag. It also comes with a built-in heat sensor
This smart backpack has the ability to sense the temperature within the backpack and adjusts accordingly through built-in side vents. It's made with heavy-duty canvas with interior padding and durable straps to provide long-lasting protection for all the gadgets you have inside. It has water-resistant coating and, in the event of heavier rain, comes with its own rain cover.
All this functionality is encased in a stylish design fit for work and play. The muted colors are suitable for an office setting, but its modern design and sturdy build can take you to city tours and outdoor activities.
It comes with 2 USB cables to charge your Android devices and a laptop cable for charging your laptop.
The TYLT Powerbag is an excellent travel bag to add to its day-to-night functionality. It's TSA-approved, so you won't need to worry about flashing alarms with all the hardware and cables in the bag. Padded shoulder straps make carrying the bag comfortable for longer travels. It even has a trolley sleeve for when you're strolling down the airport. It's also equipped with anti-theft RFID fraud protection.
The removable 10,400 mAh battery is capable of charging smartphones up to three times. It's compatible with any device with a USB charging port. You can even charge three devices all at once with two 1-Amp ports and one 2.1-Amp port.
Space and organization are not a problem either. There is a dedicated slot or pocket (13 all-in-all) for all the important things - laptop or tablet compartments, headphone pockets at the hip, side hydration sleeve for drink bottles, and a cord bag for smaller items. All pockets are strategically placed for easy access without having to empty your bag. It also stays upright when you place it on the floor, even if you fill up all 1,450 cubic inches of space.
The biggest setback is the weak zippers. While they're stainless steel, they still tend to bend or even snap if forcing the bag to close when overstuffed.
The Lifepack Solar Powered Backpack was built with the digital nomad in mind. It is designed to maximize productivity, which of course includes staying connected and charged.
The solar power system powers up their proprietary Solar Bank: a 3-in-1 Powerbank, Bluetooth Speaker, and Solar Charger. The solar bank stores 6 smartphone charges and regenerates 1 extra charge for every 4 hours of sun. It comes with an external USB charging port so you can charge your devices on the go.
Organization is also quite smart and discreet. Aside from dedicated laptop and tablet compartments, it has four hidden compartments for you to hide valuable items. It also comes with a retractable, 3-number combination lock with cable. You can simply keep the bag locked, or attach it to an unmoving item so you can be free to go to the restroom.
Unfortunately, the safety features a little faulty. You cannot remove the solar panel unless you don't mind a gaping hole in the front of your bag where a hand easily fits in. A bit of force will cause the zippers to break, so make sure your toilet breaks are quick.
The Kopack Laptop Backpack is ideal for the everyday commuter. The thick and tear-resistant nylon is also water repellent and durable. It can take a beating without looking too worn out. For a smart backpack under $40, you also get a lot of functionality for a fraction of the cost.
It doesn't come with a built-in or removable battery pack. Chances are you already have a powerbank anyway, so you can use your own and slip it into an inner pocket that connects to the external USB port. You can charge your device without opening your bag or having to take anything out.
It's also designed pretty well for organization. It has 12 slots and pockets for you to place everything in. There's also a back access to your laptop so you don't have to expose all your stuff when taking your laptop out. This back access has a lockable zipper closure for extra safety. The dual-layer zipper enclosure also helps keep thieves out of your bag.
Daily commuters who don't need too much powerups ought to get the Kopack Laptop Backpack. While it doesn't come with its own battery pack, it's very sturdy and has excellent safety features. Avoid the wear and tear and just plug in the battery pack that has enough charge for your needs.
If you'll be walking around for the most part of the day will do best with the Lifepack Solar Powered Backpack. It's pretty to look at and has enough juice to power you through the day. If you're under the sun all the time, you'll virtually be connected the whole time. It's a great day pack for day tours and city strolling.
The HP Powerup Backpack is best for busy bees, or businessmen and women. Its style can take you from the office to the pub, and its massive battery capacity will last you throughout the day. Maybe even two days. No need for a solar pack, just plug the battery pack when you're at work and you're good.
Smart backpacks are convenient innovations to the standard backpack, that's for sure. But, bear in mind that it's designed specifically for heavy gadget users and is not necessarily for you. If you're not too "techie", it might be best to find something that would suit your travel style instead like some of these daypacks for travelers, or more hiking style North Face backpack .
Roger is a little obsessed with travel. He has been to over 40 countries, broken 3 suitcases and owned over 10 backpacks in 12 months. What he doesn't know about travel, ain't worth knowing!