Powerbag Deluxe Backpack: Review


Our Test Model

UPDATE: See Our Rigorous Powerbag Field Test

Does your Smart phone, tablet, or i-device often run out of battery during the day or while you travel? Mine does. That is why I was curious when I heard about the Powerbag. The Powerbag is basically a backpack with a built in battery to charge your device. The external battery market is already crowded with giants like Mophie and Duracell but this is something radically different. So I emailed them and they sent me a test unit and put it through its’ paces. Here’s what I found:

For starters, the Powerbag is much bulkier than other external batteries. The backpack I reviewed weighs in at 3 pounds. The Juice pack by Mophie which is an iphone case weighs less than a pound. But the Powerbag offers quadruple the extra battery life of the Mophie (6000mAH vs 1500 mAH).

So let’s get into the product. The actual backpack itself is really well organized. There are three pockets I found suitable for ipods and phones. There is a compartment for a 16 inch laptop and there are a few pencil pouches. One of the cooler pockets they offered was a tablet pocket which seemed good for securing an ipad. The included ipod, mini USB, and micro USB chargers work well but they are all contained in one small pocket that can not fit a tablet. If you want to charge a tablet you will need a USB cord for your specific device which can be put into a built in USB port. From there it works well though. Warning: You can not charge a Mac from this.

This looks like a normal backpack front (besides the charging port)
But that button in the middle turns on the battery
and hidden charging display (the black strip)

One of my favorite things about The Powerbag is its’ awesomely designed battery system. Nothing looks shoddy or even like an electronic. The battery meter and power button look like normal backpack parts until you turn it on. The meter that tells you how much battery you have looks like something that Apple could have designed.

In terms of comfort the backpack was a little stiff which can hurt sometimes. The backpack is pretty regularly sized and shaped. The price is a little high but nothing outrageous.

Here’s a short Q&A we thought up.

Is it good for air travel?
I personally wouldn’t want to carry it through TSA airport security. A bag with wires running through it to a central source seems like it would look a little suspicious. I don’t want to risk the strip search. A spokesman for the company though said Today I flew out of Chicago with my “Business class”(different model) Power bag. No questions asked. The system complies with all aviation requirements and some of the bags have fly-flat tech so you don’t even have to remove your laptop at security”. Who knows?

The Charger

For long car rides: It works very well. I used it on a two hour car ride the other day and on the return ride and watched Netflix at full brightness on my iphone for the entire time and still had a full battery when I got out of the car. The backpack isn’t too big so it doesn’t eat up legroom like bigger bags do. It stored my magazines, book, headphones, pencil, charger, and phone in its’ compartments so the things that I put away were really easy to find.

Is it durable? It’s a Ful backpack which is a pretty popular brand and in our testing it seemed pretty strong. It is water resistant. It isn’t bulletproof.

How do you charge the backpack? They give you this slick black plastic charger which can hook up to the battery directly or to the backpack.
Where do I buy it? Online is your best bet right now.

Cool Features: Up to 4 extra charges for the iphone which quintuples the battery life. Great design. Very organized. Not too big in size and yet it fits all you would normally need. Charges tons of other devices too.

Charging my iphone! A backpack!

Problems: A little hard on the back. Heavy at 3 pounds. Risky to bring through airport security. Cannot charge Mac computers ( Mophie makes Juicepacks that can). Only one USB port.

Overall: If you want a lot of extra battery and crave power for your iphone/ipad/tablet/camera and you don’t mind forking over $150+ for a backpack then this is good. This can’t hold 10 textbooks so this is for people who can manage with just one or two and a laptop or tablet. This is great for long car rides and is a nice backup for power outages. Just remember to charge it before you go anywhere.

You can buy one here.

Ratings: Design:  Functionality:  Power:  Size and weight:  Overall:  Serves the purpose of Backpack and Battery Very Well
  • Product Details:
    • Model: Powerbag Deluxe Backpack by Ful
    • Power and ports: 3000mAH, or 6000mAH, 1 Micro USB, 1 Mini USB, 1 USB port, 1 ipod
    • Price: $169.99
    • Website: www.Mypowerbag.com

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(Disclaimer: The Powerbag was provided free for review purposes by the Company (RFA Brands inc.). There is no other commercial relationship between us)
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Michael Sitver

Michael Sitver is a technology insider who has been blogging about technology since 2011. Along the way, he's interviewed founders of innovative startups, and executives from fortune 500 companies, and he's tried dozens or hundreds of gadgets. Michael has also contributed to works featured in Newsday, The San Francisco Chronicle, and the associated press. Michael also occasionally consults, and writes for Seeking Alpha and Yahoo News.

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