Nobody ever goes around without at least one gadget in hand anymore. Whether it’s a mobile phone, a 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 modern tech world, everyone has turned to the smart charging backpack.
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 for a super sleek smart backpack.
Of course, travelers will make the most out of smart charging backpacks. While power banks 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 charging backpacks.
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The ECEEN Hiking Daypack Backpack is the perfect smart backpack for outdoor activities. It has an attachment with a 7-watt solar panel that charges any battery pack you choose to add. The solar cells are encased in a protective anti-scratch hardened coating sewn into high-wear PVC fabric for weather resistance.
The panel attachment is detachable which is great if you don’t need it for a specific hike, or the weather just doesn’t cooperate.
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 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 a 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 Ambor Smart Backpack is absolutely packed full of features and a bargain for the price. It comes with an external USB port to which you can connect your own battery inside. It also has a headphone jack easily accessed in the same side position.
Space and organization are not a problem either. There is a dedicated organization pocket on the front with slots for all your small stuff like a phone, headphones, papers, etc. Inside is the main packing compartment with space for up to a 17.3-inch laptop, not something you will find in every bag (many are limited to 15.6 inches). This smart pack also has two handy side pockets for a water bottle or umbrella.
Ambor has also given us lots of anti-theft features like a lockable zipper with a 3 number code. There is also a hidden pocket on the back to hide your valuables and reduce the chance of slashing.
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 EnerPlex Packr Executive Solar Powered Backpack (made in the USA!) was built with the business traveler or digital nomad in mind. It is designed to maximize productivity, which of course includes staying connected and charged.
The solar power system powers up any power bank you choose to attach, so the bigger the better in most cases. The solar power generated is only 3W, so it certainly won’t power most laptops. However, it will certainly give your power bank a boost or charge a small iPhone (6) in 3-4 hours (according to them).
The organization is also quite smart and discreet. Aside from a dedicated padded laptop sleeve on the back, and a front organization pocket for all your small things (business cards, pens, cables, etc). It also has a large storage area in the middle, just keep in mind that this is a day pack and that it is not huge in terms of space. But, that also means it’s relatively light for what you get – just 2.89lbs!
Overall, this is the kind of solar backpack for a day out on the town or at a meeting, especially when you are unsure when you will get power. It has all the right storage options for your gear and charges on the go!
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 power bank 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 the organization. It has 12 slots and 2 side pockets, and other internal pockets for you to place everything in. There’s also access to the laptop compartment at the back so you don’t have to expose all your stuff when taking your laptop out.
This back access has anti-theft features with a lockable zipper closure for extra safety. The dual-layer zipper enclosure also helps keep thieves out of your bag, making for a great laptop backpack if you ask me.
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 power bank 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!
Daily commuters who don’t need too many 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 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 EnerPlex Packr Executive 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.