Best tablet bags
No matter what tablet you have, keeping it scratch free is vital. A tablet sits at the top of the gadget hierarchy for most. So how to keep these prized possessions safe?
A tablet case is the most obvious answer. Make a quick Google search and you can expect product overload. Thankfully we have put together a handy list of the best tablet cases for every use.
Best for business travellers
LAT56° iPad/Tablet Traveller, £99
One of the best made iPad bags we've seen so far, the LAT56° iPad/Tablet Traveller is ideal as cabin baggage.
While the waterproof outside is built to bump into things, on the inside the design is precision defined. A sturdy pouch that's padded with memory foam on both sides is your tablet's luscious new home while a beautifully designed smartphone slot (which snugly stores an iPhone) sits close by. Two business-card-sized pockets and a roomy zipped section in the front complete the interior, with a Kindle-sized zipped outer pocket as an added bonus.
The only drawback is that the inner pouch is built for 10.6-inch devices only, so it's a tad too small for most netbooks; we tried to stuff an 11-inch Samsung notebook in, but to no avail.
The Traveller Bag behaves like a mini version of a wheeled case, but this 520g bag sports a comfy, ultra-padded shoulder strap, too.
Best for commuters
The North Face Shuttle Brief, £110
Designed as a classic courier shoulder bag, the North Face Shuttle Brief is capable of stowing several screens. The front has two zipped-up 12-inch pockets - the right hand one is the perfect size sleeve for an iPad with cover, while the left-hand side includes a neoprene pocket for a smartphone or camera, as well as a netted, zipped section.
Giving quick access to a tablet (though do use a sleeve, since the nylon is pretty thin), the Shuttle Brief works as a comfy, good-value shoulder bag for a laptop – or several – with a clever, properly padded neoprene pocket with a choice of slips and pockets capable of hosting various sizes of laptops and netbooks up to 17-inches. This 26-litre, 866g bag also includes a central section that's roomy enough for clothes, folders, magazines or perhaps even a laptop in a separate cover.
Best for style
Knomo Kyoto, £125
A touch more feminine, this oh-so-soft leather number from Knomo is a perfect fit for an iPad. The Kyoto has a central area that easily takes an iPad or similar, case and all, within its green padded walls. The zip is highest quality brushed nickel, as are the shoulder strap buckles and logo. There is also a second, smaller zipped pocket on the front of the Kyoto.
This front pocket is a tad small, with the pen holders and business card pouch tricky to access with an iPad in-situ. The same problem of tightness applies to a small pocket on the rear of the 335g Kyoto, which hosts a pouch perfect for an iPhone.
As long as you're careful to use the front and rear pockets only after removing your iPad, there are fewer more compact or comfortable tablet bags than the Kyoto. Stitched into the inside of the bag is a unique "If Lost" ID number.
Best for hikers and skiers
Berghaus Remote 30, £55
If you're the type of person who can't travel without tech, then the outdoorsy Berghaus Remote 30 could be for you. The iPad, in a tough case like the Lifeproof Nuud or Griffin Survivor, makes for a great digital map up a mountain.
The Remote 30's front pocket can host a tablet perfectly well; don't be put off by its slightly exposed look since a tablet is kept in place by a clip. Those lacking in bravery can opt for the interior, where this 30-litre backpack's elasticated pocket is easily able to hold a 10-inch tablet or a netbook, though we actually managed to squeeze in a 17-inch laptop (but without its protective cover, in our test).
Elsewhere it's classic Berghaus, with a reflective red outer, pockets galore (including netted water bottle holsters on each side that double as useful stuff-sacks for chargers and cables) and a water resistant design that extends to a hood underneath/covered zippers. It's also one of the most comfortable and best-value backpacks around, and as suited to the city as the snow.
Best for long lunches
QDOS Leather Clutch, £54.99
With Apple's finest as common in coffee shops as around the last meeting you sat through, the QDOS Leather Clutch marries a tablet sleeve with a stylish clutch bag.
It's fashioned from real leather, but the velvety interior makes for a soft and safe place for a pad. It also extends slightly to squeeze in a smartphone or other trinkets.
A zip with a silver-plated chain and leather tassel is the key feature in terms of transport, and while the leather carry handle won't be to everyone's taste, this simple handbag-aping iPad carry case is more functional than your average tablet sleeve.
Best for versatility
Crosskase Fusion, £69.99
For tablet-toting types who can't choose between a briefcase, courier bag or rucksack and who can't predict which gadget they'll next want to travel with, the black, silver or green Crosskase Fusion might suit.
Well made and as sturdy as any here, the Fusion has a dedicated iPad pocket on the front for easy access, though it's protected by both padding and a stiff pull-over lid. Behind is a section containing solid pockets for a smartphone and other kit, while the inside sees a dedicated 17-inch laptop sleeve beside an area fitted with a pen holder and pockets for chargers and the like.
Finally, there's a three-way choice of how to carry the Crosskase: by its handle, shoulder strap or backpack-style straps, which can be partly detached and stowed away. The latter is the Crosskase's weakpoint. It's just not comfortable enough and nor does this bag have much give in it (you can forget using at as a weekend bag, since there's no room for clothes), but as a messenger bag there are few more functional.
Best for school and college
Be.ez LE Rush En Ville, £31.33
They use iPads in Paris, apparently and here's le proof. Ideal for the school run or college, this lightweight 182 satchel-style bag has a dedicated inner pocket for an iPad and plenty of room for other bits, too. Sold in either Black Coffee, Lagoon Dream or Lime Park (we'll attempt a translation: brown, blue and green), the nylon-made Be.ez LE Rush En Ville has padded edges and padding around the tablet, as well as a comfy reinforced shoulder strap.
On the front is a Velcro-fastened pocket that's roomy enough, with a couple of pockets on the inside – including a keyring loop and hidden zipped-up pocket for cash and cards.