Apple's smaller notebooks -- the 11" and 13" MacBook Air and the 13" MacBook Pro -- are incredibly popular, so it's not surprising that accessory manufacturers are now turning out some beautiful and functional products especially for these computers. Today we'll be looking at OGIO's 13" Covert Shoulder Bag (US$69.99). It's perfect for those smaller Apple notebooks and we're going to give one away to a TUAW reader.
I've always been fond of vertical computer bags, so the Covert Shoulder Bag immediately caught my eye. This bag comes in black or Heather Gray -- the latter is an attractive dark gray with just a hint of brown in it. That exterior is made of 1000D Kodra fabric with a water-resistant coating, using Nylon webbing for the handles and strap.
The strap is padded for comfortable carrying, and your laptop is going to be well-protected in a main padded compartment with a quilted liner. There's a second compartment inside the bag for your accessories with a smartphone pocket, a zippered pen/pencil compartment, and several slots for business cards.
On the back of the case is an open-topped slip pocket, perfect for papers, a book or a folder. Finally, there's a zipped audio pocket on the front with a cleverly-hidden audio port to thread your headphones through.
The bag weighs in at 1.4 pounds, about half the weight of the 13" MacBook Air. OGIO includes a metal placard on the front with the style number imprinted on it, which is helpful when someone asks "What is that case?"
I tried out the case with an 11" MacBook Air, which had plenty of room inside this case. It's designed to carry up to the 13" MacBook Pro with ease. The Covert uses YKK Vislon zippers, which are watertight, strong, and resistant to chemicals and UV. I found the zippers to be somewhat "rough" in terms of pull, but they certainly keep your gear away from the elements.
The strap is adjustable over a wide range and the padding is fine. One minor point -- the strap doesn't have a non-slip coating on it, so I found that it was somewhat easy for it to slip off my shoulder. Many competing bags use a rubberized material on shoulder straps to keep the strap from slipping.
One other minor niggling point: this isn't a TSA "checkpoint friendly" bag as it doesn't have a laptop-only section that can lie flat on an X-ray belt. It's surprising to find a new computer bag that isn't compliant, considering that the TSA standard has been around since 2008.
In terms of looks, the OGIO 13" Covert Shoulder Bag is one of the nicer looking computer bags I've seen recently. However, it is probably a better bag for the non-traveler who just needs a bag for school or work, and doesn't need to run the bag through TSA checkpoints on a weekly basis.
- Well-designed, attractive, and constructed of high-quality components
- Vertical design looks very professional
- Notebook pocket is heavily padded for good protection
- Separate pocket for accessories and other items keeps your MacBook safe from scratches
- Separate outside pocket for audio devices or smartphones with a hidden cable port
- Price is quite reasonable
- Not checkpoint-friendly
- Shoulder strap pad is rather slick and can slide off of your shoulder or require a permanent shrug to keep it from falling
Who is it for?
- Owners of 11- and 13-inch MacBooks who want a reasonably-priced and stylish bag offering excellent protection
Like the looks of this 13" Covert Shoulder Bag? It can be yours if you're the lucky winner in our giveaway. Here are the rules for the giveaway:
- Open to legal US residents of the 50 United States, the District of Columbia and Canada (excluding Quebec) who are 18 and older.
- To enter, fill out the form below completely and click or tap the Submit button.
- The entry must be made before April 19, 2013 11:59PM Eastern Daylight Time.
- You may enter only once.
- One winner will be selected and will receive an OGIO 13" Covert Shoulder Bag in Heather Gray valued at $69.99.
- Click Here for complete Official Rules.