Greater than 4 minutes, my friend!
Traveling seems an intrinsic part of the life of translators. If we do not visit our clients we are attending conferences or just finding a new place where our inner nomad finds rest to work. When we are working on the go and need to take a laptop, some paper and pencils a good bag is indispensable. This xl8 review focuses on the Bobby Bizz, a backpack with a Dutch heritage.
About Bobby Bizz
A couple of months ago, the Dutch company XD Design introduced a crowdfunding campaign for a new product: the Bobby Bizz. Behind this fancy (and somewhat curiously sounding) name lies an interesting concept. The Bobby Bizz is not only a backpack but can serve as a briefcase as well. So depending on your lifestyle and plans you can use one single bag as a professional looking briefcase or wear it on your back if you need more comfort. What makes the Bobby Bizz even more interesting is a whole plethora of features. First, the bag has an advanced storage design that offers plenty of space for a laptop and a tablet, a notepad and many small belongings. To prevent those belongings from being stolen the bag is made from water repellent fabric and equipped with an integrated lock. The fabric is anti-cut as well so people cannot use a knife to rip off your valuable items. And if that is not enough, the Bobby Bizz also features an integrated USB charging port so you can charge your smartphone or tablet directly in the bag.
Therefore, it might not come as a surprise that the crowdfunding campaign was beyond successful, raising more than €440,000 from backpackers all over the world.
Using the Bobby Bizz backpack
When receiving the Bobby Bizz and opening the package one thing is clear: this combination of a backpack and briefcase is meant to impress. The backpack is made from a good looking and sturdy fabric that gives it a premium look. The inside however is still more impressive: there is plenty of space for a medium to big laptop and many other small compartments for a tablet, papers, pens and other belongings. The Bobby Bizz is therefore an ideal companion if you want to take everything with you when working on the go or travelling to other destinations. Thanks to the professional design you can even use the bag while travelling to clients without looking like a lost nomad.
I am even more impressed by the different ways to use the Bobby Bizz. It is equipped with a shoulder strap that can be used on two different sides (the long and short side of the bag) to wear the bag on your shoulder, there is a handgrip to keep the briefcase at hand and then there is also another shoulder strap to wear the bag on your back. So there are a total of four different ways to take the pack with you. The shoulder strap for your back is further equipped with a wire cable and integrated security lock to protect the bag. All these features make the possibilities of this bag nearly endless.
Pros and cons of the Bobby Bizz
Using the Bobby Bizz is a real pleasure. The bag looks smart and practical and is therefore ideal for professional meetings. While the bag could also be used for less professional goals, like short travels I would not use it for that. As a professional bag it does a great job, but taking clothes and toiletries seems like a whole different endeavour to me.
Using the bag also reveals some slight drawbacks. While it has hidden zippers for security purposes, opening and closing is a bit of a problem. The zippers are simply hidden too well and therefore can’t be used very easily. I am also making use of the shoulder strap to wear the briefcase on one shoulder. Changing the position of the shoulder strap from the long side of the bag to the short side (and vice versa) is very easily done. However, as a result of the design the shoulder strap can easily come loose, resulting in the bag sliding from your shoulder and even falling to the ground. Up to now it has happened to me a couple of times right before laying the shoulder strap on my shoulder. The backpack should not easily slide from your shoulder, but the design is a bit too loose to be safe.
All other safety features however are just great. The water-repellent and anti-cut fabric protects my tablet and laptop on the go and there is virtually no chance of water ingress in heavy weather. My biggest fear until now is the inside: some pockets are a bit too small to be practical while the bigger space for tablets (and even binders) offers so much space that loose papers can easily get damaged. On the other hand, stuffing the bag in a conscious way prevents any troubles with documents. To this point, all my documents have arrived undamaged at their destination.
Bobby Bizz conclusion
After having used the Bobby Bizz backpack and briefcase for a couple of months I am excited about it. It looks professional, is very safe and proves a versatile companion on many travels. Many safety features are just invisible and no one would notice how safe the fabric is. That just makes the backpack go unnoticed to many people, and makes the contents inherently safer. At a price of about €100 the backpack is not very expensive. Although I think the design will attract more male than female users the bag can prove useful in a dozen cases. The Bobby Bizz backpack is therefore definitely worth considering when you are looking for a versatile new briefcase and/or backpack.