Hands-on: Incase ICON and new ICON Lite backpacks fit 15-inch MacBooks, all iPads, and much more

Incase is launching a new laptop backpack this week called ICON Lite ($99, pictured right) that packs MacBooks up to 15-inches, any iPad, and more for under $100. ICON Lite joins Incase’s existing lineup of ICON backpacks that also includes ICON ($199, pictured left) and ICON Slim ($149) to create three sizes at three price points. Check out our hands-on with Incase ICON and the new ICON Lite below:

ICON Lite is the first ICON backpack to be priced below $100 since the collection was introduced almost 16 years ago and one of Incase’s first sub-$100 backpacks since the company was founded 20 years ago.

If you don’t need to tote around as much gear as the ICON and ICON Slim accommodate, ICON Lite offers you Incase’s signature quality and clever use of space in an affordable and lightweight backpack.

ICON and ICON Lite have similar designs as part of the same collection. ICON Lite is half the price and about half as deep. ICON Lite is ideal if you want a well designed backpack to carry around a MacBook, a handful of accessories, and maybe an iPad or book or two without spending too much. Personally, I tend to pack way more than I typically need so ICON is better suited for my needs (and my new go-to bag).

ICON, the larger of the two bags, includes the most storage compartments starting with a small zip-up pocket on top. It’s lined with soft material so you can drop your iPhone in (or AirPods and Apple Watch as pictured) safely.


The first side pocket has a bright green lining and an opening the run a cable through even when the pocket is zipped up. This is ideal for stowing a small battery pack and running a USB cable through for charging your iPhone in your hand or pocket.


The other side pocket is similarly sized and also zips closed but lacks the cable slot.


ICON has a medium-sized side pocket fit for tablets too. The larger 12.9-inch iPad Pro may be too tall for this pocket and be positioned inside the main compartment, but it’s perfectly sized for the 9.7-inch iPad Pro.


While the tablet pocket runs along a third of the backpack, a notebook pocket lined with soft material unzips along the remaining two-thirds of the back. This slot is plenty big enough to carry a 15-inch MacBook Pro and any sized iPad with quick access when needed.


ICON’s middle section is the largest and includes plenty of pockets, slots, and pouches. One slot runs from the top of the interior to the bottom is zips shut. Another padded section is large enough to hold a 15-inch MacBook Pro as pictured. A pocket in front of that offers an additional space for a tablet or papers, and the depth here accommodates dropping in bigger items.


Another large section of the bag unzips and features slots for pens and other small accessories, a detachable clip, and two velcro-closed pockets. ICON’s front has a horizontal zipper that unveils a small pocket with two slots inside.

ICON is also very well padded which makes it comfortable even during extended use, and the backpack straps buckle together to provide a well supported fit.

ICON is available from Incase for $199.95 in eight colors: black, red, navy, gray (pictured), moss green/black, anthracite, bronze, and deep red.

ICON Lite, Incase’s newest backpack, offers the same build quality in a smaller package at half the price. ICON Lite features fewer compartments overall while still accommodating a 15-inch MacBook Pro and any size iPad and more.


The top pocket unzips to reveal a narrow slot deep enough to stow an iPhone 7 Plus or wallet.


Icon Lite features a horizontal zipper along the front that protects a pocket large enough to hold a handful of accessories.


ICON Lite has a simpler back with three cushioned sections for comfort and sturdy adjustable straps. The main storage compartment has a pocket lined with soft material that can hold any current MacBook Pro with room for any sized iPad and additional accessories.


Overall, ICON Lite is an easy recommendation for anyone looking for a simple and durable MacBook backpack without spending too much money. ICON Lite’s back padding, handle padding, and strap padding makes it a comfortable backpack to grab and go with even if it’s packed full.

The new ICON Lite is available from Incase for $99.95 in seven colors: black, gray, anthracite, navy, bronze, deep red (pictured), and red.

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