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Back to School 2013: Bags (Backpacks and Shoulder Bags)

by Roy Choi | September 14, 2013September 14, 2013 9:00 am PST

herschel-backpack

The following post is sponsored by Best Buy. Head over to Best Buy for your back to school needs.

So you’ve got all your laptops, tablets, phones and other gadgets all ready for school, but you still need a worthy bag (backpack, messenger, or courier) for the coming school year? We’ve compiled a list of our favorite bags that not only do a good job protecting those valuables but also look sharp and are convenient to use.

Boa Squeeze (Backpack)

The Boa Squeeze is one of the sleeker designs available for backpacks. It fits 13 to 15-inch laptops as well as compartments for folders, notebooks, tablets, phones, and even some refreshments. Yes, refreshments, take a look at the gallery, there is a drink tumbler in one of the compartments. At any rate, you can pack in a lot of stuff in the Boa Squeeze and look sharp while strutting around on campus. The Boa Squeeze retails at $129.95.

Viper Courier (Shoulder Bag)

The Viper Courier is another bag from Booq and like the Boa Squeeze, looks sleek and compact.  Available in 13-inch and 15-inch models, the Viper Courier is priced at $99.95 and $109.95 respectively.  Though the Viper Courier looks slim, it can pack in everything you need in a mobile workspace, with separate compartments for laptop, tablet, phones, media players and more.  The Viper Courier is a great shoulder bag that provides great protection, little bulk and awesome looks.

Incipio Expat (Backpack) & Incipio Utility (Shoulder Bag)

Both the Expat and Utility feature durable ballistic nylon shell and are super TSA-friendly. Why aren’t all bags just made this way? Just unzip the “rear” zippers and lay flat for easy security checks, no extra trays to deal with. Additionally, a mesh lining lets you know what and where things are and is perfect for speedy trips through security checkpoints. Various pockets and compartments are lined with faux fur lining and keeps your gadgets cozy and safe. Handy media pockets and cord pass-throughs make these bags even more fitting for the tech-friendly. The Expat is available for $89.99 while the Utility is available for $99.99, various colors are available. These bags are must haves for regular travelers.

Herschel products at first glance look plain and simple. However, you realize the bags are much more than some canvas and string once you’ve used and gotten a closer look at them.  Herschel offers the Pop Quiz and Totem in various colors and designs complete with familiar Herschel red-white stripe interior. The Pop Quiz has a compartment for up to a 15-inch laptop, and other gadgets or knick-knacks, including fleece-lined pockets for sunglasses, gadgets or accessories. Herschel makes great, durable, and classy looking bags. The Pop Quiz starts at $69.99 while the Totem is priced at $89.99 , both are offered in a variety of colors and designs. You can’t go wrong with Herschel.

OGIO Newt (Backpack) and OGIO Consul Case (Messenger)

OGIO is best known for supplying golf and active sport pros and amateurs with bags to help lug their gear around. OGIO also has a line of backpacks and workbags to get your laptops and other gadgets around in well-designed and protective bags. The Newt and Consul are padded just about everywhere and has separate compartments for EVERYTHING while still looking slim.

Both the Newt and Consul are offered for 13-inch and 15-inch styles and in various color options. The Newt is priced respectively at $90 and $100 for the 13 and 15-inch versions, while the Consul is priced at $64.99 and $69.99 respectively.  These OGIO bags are like magic, look at how much you can stowe without looking bulky


Roy Choi

Roy Choi is a Southern California native. He has been infatuated with technology reviews ever since he bought his first crummy laptop in the summer...

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