What is a Smart Backpack?
Everyday items get “smarter” the further we go as a species.
It’s good news for the techy people around the globe and people who want functional items.
Okay, so what are Smart backpacks?
A Smart backpack or hi-tech backpack is an item that can adapt to its environment.
Picture yourself traveling through the city, backpacking around the globe, or hiking the nearest mountain peak WITHOUT looking for a place where you can charge your phone or laptop. It’s a practical way for any traveler, businessman, or adventurer to go through daily, modern life.
Smart backpacks can have various features such as
- USB charging ports
- Charging cables
- built-in lithium-ion batteries
- anti-theft features
- Built-in speakers
- Location trackers
- Power banks
The features present in a Smart backpack depend on its price and your specific needs.
From the research I’ve done, you will learn everything you need to know before choosing the best Smart backpack that suits you. You will also have the opportunity to explore some popular quality brands, such as NAYO Smart and Nordace.
Note: because of the continuous inflation and rising prices, we’ll focus on affordable-quality options that I’ll put links to throughout the text.
The 12 Most Important Things You Should Consider Before Choosing Your Smart Backpack
1. The difference between “waterproof” and “water-resistant”
Most Smart backpacks should have water protection, so the electronic parts remain usable even after a light storm.
The main difference is that water-resistant materials protect your electronics from light rain or snow. On the other hand, waterproof materials offer the same benefits, PLUS increased water protection.
For example, a waterproof Smart backpack submerged under water will protect the electronic parts from any damage, but a water-resistant Smart Backpack cannot sustain the damage.
A water-resistant and affordable solution: Modoker Vintage Smart Backpack – For the Urban-Focused Students
2. Another reason to consider is whether you should buy a water-resistant or waterproof Smart backpack
Reflect on what you value and in what situations you would use a Smart backpack depending on these two qualities. If you are going around town and through your daily life, then I suggest the former, but if you are an adventurer (a hiker, a sailor), I recommend the latter.
Mainly because of the materials they’re made up of.
A water-resistant Smart backpack provides superior comfort, style, and creativity. These Smart backpacks don’t require meticulous manufacturing and precision welding (thermoplastics) as waterproof materials do.
For example, their materials can be creatively tightly woven, the zippers can be covered, and the materials can be chemically coated to increase water resistance. Furthermore, they are usually less heavy than waterproof Smart backpacks. Most adventurers would flawlessly get by with water-resistant Smart Backpacks since they are more comfortable, lighter, and affordable.
A vegan-based solution: Himawari Smart Backpack – For the Fashionable, Eco-Conscious Woman.
Click this link to learn more about natural and synthetic water-resistant and waterproof materials for your Smart backpack.
3. Size matters in this “case”
If you are here, there is a high probability you are looking for an electronic backpack.
What do I mean by that?
You are looking for specific compartments and pockets having the exact dimensions to fit your laptop, Smartphone, or anything else you might carry.
For example, if you have a 15″ laptop, you would look for a laptop compartment that is slightly bigger than 15″ (half an inch more). You wouldn’t want your laptop to slide around, shifting its weight and increasing your discomfort now, would you?
Also, take note of its capacity. If you plan to go on longer trips, you should choose a Smart backpack with lots of space.
4. Does the Smart backpack include a power bank?
Some Smart backpacks don’t include a power bank (portable charger). In this instance, you should get your own.
If it comes with a power bank, you should consider its specifics.
- How big is it?
- What is the mAh (milliampere-hour)?
- Is it removable?
- Is the battery waterproof protected?
Now, if you want to know how many times you can charge your phone, you should see the mAh of your phone’s battery.
Note: A simple rule of thumb is that power banks lose ⅓ of their charging capacity. This third is lost during power conversion and charging (mainly heat).
For example, if the power bank’s mAh is 10,000 mAh and your phone’s battery has 4500 mAh, you can charge your phone 1.4 times from a fully depleted battery.
Discover the specific equation and its explanation for backpacks with charger here.
5. Multiple power banks and charging ports?
Consider having multiple power banks and USB charging ports if you want the ultimate charging backpack and provide more value to the people around you.
It’s always good to be perceived by others as a competent person. You might even get some compliments.
If you’re a music lover, consider getting a Smart backpack with a headphone port.
Click here to get a Smart backpack with a combination of a USB charging port and headphone port: Tzowla Smart Backpack – For Experts On a Mission
6. External or internal USB charging ports?
You should also consider whether the Smart backpack has external or internal charging ports.
If you want more protection, opt for internal USB charging ports. If you need easier accessibility, opt for an external USB charging port.
7. TSA-approved Smart backpacks
TSA-friendly items should be a priority if you want to use your Smart backpack and travel by plane. These Smart backpacks can open 180 degrees (horizontally), making it easy for security to scan your luggage.
Do you want quick pass-through security? Check out: YOREPEK Smart Travel Backpack – For Big-Capacity Airplane Travelers
The Transportation Security Administration regulates tech stuff like portable power banks and baggage equipped with lithium-ion batteries.
For example, power banks must be carried in carry-on baggage only, same goes for the luggage equipped with lithium batteries (backpacks with battery packs) unless its batteries are removed and placed in the carry-on baggage.
8. Does the Smart backpack have Bluetooth?
There are some intriguing features you can have if the Smart backpack comes with Bluetooth. Some Smart Backpacks have built-in speakers that you can use to put on your favorite music with your smartphone or laptop.
Backpacks can be easily misplaced when you are being hypnotized by exploring new things, and they can be stolen.
Fret not, Smart backpacks can come with a Bluetooth tracker tag that is hidden, and removing it would be a difficult job. You can connect with it through an app and immediately track your Smart backpack. It can even notify you if the Smart Backpack is outside a certain radius, for example, if it’s 50 feet further away from you.
9. Anti-theft features
While talking about safety, it’s crucial to know additional features.
Anti-theft zippers come in various ways like magnets, fingerprint unlocks, and combination locks. They are also tear-resistant, like the whole Smart backpack. Some thieves are not stealthy at all. They will slash your straps and take your entire baggage.
Expel petty thievery: KOPACK Smart Backpack – For the Security-Focused Businessperson
Another feature you should know about is anti-radio frequency identification (RFID) technology. This technology is valuable against thieves who want to steal your card information by blocking magnetic scanners.
“Caged” card pockets: Nordace Siena II Smart Backpack – Against “magnetic” thieves (Scroll a bit below for the upgraded Nordace Siena II version)
Ahh, the famous companion of any electronic item. The more features the Smart backpack has, the easier it will overheat.
As you may know, extreme cold or hot temperatures can damage your electronics, especially the battery life. It simply disturbs the ion balance inside them.
It’s especially true for lithium-ion batteries. They can get hot and unstable, leading to an explosion (a rare occurrence). To prevent this, avoid being in the Sun for prolonged periods and ensure that the Smart backpack is made of breathable materials and has ventilation.
Exceedingly versatile and breathable: MATEIN Travel Smart Backpack – For Any Occasion
A quick test that you can do to know the heating limit is to be out in the Sun and use all the features your Smart backpack has to offer, checking from time to time when it becomes overheated. That way, you will safely know how long you may use it before it becomes dangerous.
11. Charging cables and compatibility
In point five, I talked about multiple power banks and charging ports. Going one step further, I’ll also tell you about charging cables.
Make sure to know if the Smart backpack comes with charging cables. If not, then I suggest having your own.
If you already have a laptop, rest assured you might have a charging cable that’s compatible with the charging port (USB).
When looking for a backpack that charges phone, for example, if you have an android smartphone like Samsung Galaxy S21 FE, you should have a charging cable that is USB-A to USB-C to be compatible.
12. Ergonomic design
As for compatibility, ensure that the Smart backpack suits your body like a glove. Look for extra padding on the straps and the back of the Smart Backpack. These will increase support and reduce the risk of injury from hauling your precious items around. Each body type is different, so experiment and use the Smart backpack that fits you.
Furthermore, ensure you protect your electronic items by noticing if there is some padding on the bottom of the Smart backpack, so you don’t hear a loud “thump” sound and cracking coming from your laptop.
To be the most comfortable, the weight of the Smart backpack should be from 10 to 20 % of your body weight. For short trips, go for 15-20 % of your body weight. For long trips and hikes, go for 10-15 % of your body weight.
For example, if you are a 150-pound person, the weight of the Smart backpack should never exceed 30 pounds.
Extra straps around your chest and waist will distribute the weight of the Smart backpack around your body, making it feel lighter.
Travel to another country? Seeking a Smart backpack that is TSA-friendly, comfortable, and can redirect you if you lose your way? The perfect solution: NAYO SMART Rover – For the Streamlined Adventurer
Lastly, remember to distribute the weight of the Smart backpack evenly and symmetrically according to your body (so it won’t weigh on you on one side more than the other) and to have even and balanced straps on both sides of your body.