I switched from a Samsonite roller briefcase to backpack a few years ago while working in NYC. Rolling a bag around the subways and city streets was simply not tenable anymore – I needed something more portable. Picking the right backpack was key though. I had some experience w/ Ogio backpacks from before and so it was a natural choice. I’d taken one through Jordan and Israel and it took a beating and kept going.
After a ton of research, I ultimately landed on the OGIO Metro Street Computer Laptop Backpack, Black. I had seen many other business travelers using these bags and they seemed to get good reviews. This has ultimately been a pretty good backpack. Multiple pockets, including a laptop pocket (two actually – one on the inside and a zippered one on the “outside” that sits on your back).
I can fit a surprising amount of stuff in this thing! If I don’t bring workout gear (e.g. shoes) I can do a full week in this thing. Some of that is probably due to my Marine Corps packing skills though :-). And it easily fits in the overhead compartment or under my seat (which I try to avoid!).
Speaking of the Marine Corps, one of the things that sold me on the Ogio Backpack was the sway strap in the front. While hiking for miles with an incredibly heavy backpack in the Marine Corps you learned the benefit of the sway strap in the front in terms of a stabilizer and load reducer. However, the Ogio strap didn’t last very long and ultimately broke pretty quickly. That’s really the only negative thing I have to say about this backpack. All things considered, I highly recommend it!