camohan, Feb 1, 2019 : First and foremost let me apologies for coming up with a review so late. I will try to make the review as worth the wait as possible. Honestly, It is quite difficult as my fellow reviewers have already done a fantastic job. On a positive note, I am using the backpack since more than a month and well verse with how does it fare in day to day life. To begin with, this is the third backpack which OnePlus has introduced since it started to sell gears. And with every new version, they have tried to come up with something new and with focus to meet the needs of a segment of users. The first one being a Luna grey backpack which was a basic purpose backup for every-day use, the second one was a traveler backup with main focus on meeting the needs of travelers with a specific separate compartment to keep clothes and the current edition with focus on users who like to explore nature with special focus on water resistant/ proofing capabilities. Though all of the backpacks can be used in a day to day life and for various specific occasions. Without further ado, let’s see how does the Explorer backpack fare in “Everyday excellence” Like it is said “A Picture is worth a thousand words” and me being a person who likes to use less words, would try to explain more about the backup by way of pictures. Let us start with a bird eye view of the features available with the backpack. I will explain in detail about the important features later: Here are some more details on the features : The Explorer backpack is good option for outdoor activities, commuting and travel thanks to the water resistant capabilities, easy to use design and good number of thoughtfully made pockets and compartments. Compartments : The backpack has three compartments : 1. Have your ever experienced that you are not able to find routine things ? The front compartment just solves that problem by providing an easy access place to store on the go things like keys, wallet, pens, notepads, USB cables, pen drives, etc. I use this compartment to mostly keep a small handbook, pen, pencil and use it for loose papers for my official or personal work. The front compartment is not so big, I could slide my hand till wrist inside. 2. The main compartment is visible after opening the lock. The compartment has 2 wide pockets inside viz., one specially made to keep a laptop up-to 15 inches. My Lenova T470 with a dimension of 13.25 x 9.15 x 0.79 inches sits comfortably secured with a the laptop strap and the other to keep other bigger things which does not fit in other compartments. It can be easily used to keep a denim and a t-shirt. I usually use the second pocket to stuff in my lunch box, earphones, charger and adaptor of phone and laptop. 3. The third compartment is on the rear. This side always touches your body whether you keep the bag on the shoulders behind or keep the bag in the front. It’s more of a safe zone. This can mostly be used to keep some flat stuff like a flat file or a notebook or a laptop as well. More heavy stuff in here will leave less place for the front compartment where I assume more important things are placed. Secret chamber As you realized that all the compartments are done, you suddenly see a zip holder looking from its corner of eye and one realizes oh wait there is another pocket here. Indeed, this pocket is super secret, one might have to give a real good look to identify. This is because the zip and the holder is cleverly hidden beneath, a delight to discover it indeed. This is again safe zone as this part will always be in contact with your body. Important documents like passport, hard-drive or a mobile device can be placed securely. I use public transport and usually take the advantage of long commuting time to get a quick nap. Before using this backpack I use to hold the phone in hand or put it in trouser or front pocket of the shirt. This has risk as the phone might fall off or get stolen. The biggest benefit I found from the explorer backpack is this little secret chamber. I just tuck in the mobile, zip lock and sleep without thinking about mobile getting damaged or stolen. This also comes quite handy when one wants to charge the device with powerbank but wants the hands to be free. Bottle holder pocket The bottle pocket is too narrow to keep a bigger one. Secondly, if a bigger one is somehow inserted the inside compartment bulges to some extend thereby providing a lesser space inside. However, a workaround here to keep the bottle inside but it will require one to open the zip every now and then to access the water or liquid stuff. This is an area which has scope for improvement. Front pouch Here is a real life story on the front pouch. I was travelling in metro standing, the commuter sitting right in front of me was occasionally gazing at the backpack. I could make out he wants to ask more details on it. He resisted, until the final destination came and he asked me about which backpack is this. He said the front pouch zipper attracted him a lot. Let’s see what makes it so special : A closure look at the above zips and one realizes that the left one is completely packed with zero possibility of water seeping in or out of it. That is why the front pouch is usable for storing the wet stuff. It also has a water vent so that the water can pass out of the bag. The vent has 19 small holes enough for liquid to pass by. However this can be pretty annoying specially if one is travelling in a public transport and the water drips over on someone else. Good part about the front pouch is that it can be opened 180 degrees for easier cleaning and wiping. Currently, I use the front pouch for keeping my work ID card, metro card, house keys and some loose change for easy access. Tech-ready I call this backpack a tech ready because it can organize you gadgets very efficiently as it has so many pockets for everything one need. I carry laptop, hard-drive, Pen drives, USB cable, laptop charger and adaptor, mobile charger and adaptor. You can also carry a small compact camera inside. Lock mechanism The bag has a fold over cover which house the lock mechanism. The lock mechanism of the explorer back is managed by a couple i.e. snap-pull & fidlock and a single haul loop in OnePlus’s corporate color red. Pulling the haul loop unlocks but the fold cover remains at its place unless lifted up manually. This is good to prevent accidentally opening. The fold over cover houses the L shaped zipper which leads to the main compartment. Snap-pull is the entire mechanism which holds the magnet inside which is called as fid-lock. The snap-pull consist of 2 parts viz., the one which is inside just behind the logo to which the pulling mechanism is attached called as “male” and the other one is the magnet called as “female” .The official website of the Snap-pull mentions that the duo can easily manage load capacity of 65 kgs, which is pretty impressive. Here is the short video on the lock mechanism : Water resistant capabilities The exterior of the Black Explorer backpack is made of 100% Nylon material called as Cordura® which is one of the best fabric and fiber technologies available to make your backpack tougher. Here is a photo demonstrating the characteristic of material used in the OnePlus explorer Backpack, which makes your explorer backpack Water repellent, Abrasion resistant and Tear resistant. Source : https://www.cordura.com/Fabrics/classic-fabric Here is a short video on the water resistant capabilities. The bag was left under a fan for 15 minutes, it was close to dry. It did absorb few drops but it dried up equally faster. I am pretty convinced I could use this during rainy season. The only downside is the zippers which are not waterproof as found it front pouch. Therefore prolonged exposure to water may lead to remote chances of water sipping inside from the zipper. Just like mobile, IP67 certification does not mean you are covered under warranty from water damages ;-) Variants Oh well I almost forgot to tell, explorer bag come in 2 different variants viz., Slate black and Morandi Green. The only difference between both variants are in terms of weight and the exterior fabric. Black one weighs 20 gm more than the green one. Not a bummer. Morandi green’s exterior is made of 100% Polyster which means it does not come with Cordura Nylon and therefore not water resistant or to an extend less water resistant. I have always been great fan of Black, hence I opted to review Slate Black. I have a Morandi green too and used it for 7 days. Personally I felt slate black better in terms of its outer texture and feel. Slate black has a feeling of denim. Comparison with the elder brother the travel backpack Here are few comparison photos between the above version : If I had to choose between Travel Backpack and the Explorer backpack, I would go without a second thought with the explorer backpack because of its unique design and lesser weight as compared to the former one. Fold over cover Not much has been discussed or thought about the fold over cover. But this is one specific thing I experience daily and wanted to share with the readers. If you notice the right side of the fold over cover is pointed with a 90° angle and the left side is curved. Most of the times during travelling, it becomes very inconvenient to go pass the crowd as the pointed edge either brushes with some commuter or gets struck with other bag. It requires a bit of care to ensure the bag doesn't hit someone or gets stuck. This would never happen with a non-fold over cover back. I personally feel there is a room for improvement in terms of designing here. PS this happens only when your bag is filed to its capacity. So I presume this should not affect much. Synopsis Too long don't wanna read, here is a 30 second read : Pros : Grade A quality Unique design Ample space Water resistant, abrasion and tear free exterior fabric Waterproof pocket One hand lock unlock feature Secret pocket Cons : Pricey Not all zips are waterproof Un uniform width leading to bulging look with more stuff Inability to stand without support Everything cannot be perfect so it ought to have cons. However, above cons are no bummer and influential enough to change your decision. Conclusion The OnePlus explorer backpack is a premium product which ticks all the boxes of OnePlus’s company philosophy of Superb build quality, fabulous design, practical usability but at a steep price. This backpack has made quite a lot of head turns at my work. Every good thing comes with some price, so even if you have to shell out more, this backpack is worth it. All this while I said I will upload photos but damn I forgot, instead I made a small video. Make sure the volume is on while playing the video. I hope this will help someone to take a decision on the explorer backpack. Cheers!! Edit : In case you plan to buy the backpack and need invite code, feel free to request at https://forums.oneplus.com/threads/...on-code-to-oneplus-explorer-backpack.1001550/ @Trista W. will send invites to first 400 requestors. So hurry!