When describing clothes, cut and fit and fashion takes the lead. But when describing clothes that know and expect mobile devices to be part of the equation, you need to look for a whole new set of expressions. Not that cut and fit and fashion are to be ignored, but that’s not all there is. So when describing the Evolution Wear Winter Solstice Jacket/Backpack, you need to add protection, access and usability.
But since the Jacket/Backpack is to be worn outside and for the people to be active who are wearing it, the physical aspect should be noted first. It’s made from a warm breathable fabric and is available in varied sizes (the European fit being smaller than the like-sized American sizes, but more tailored for style) and is durable but flexible and available in a choice of colors — those looking to avoid the all-black look can opt for a white with blue piping or pink (geared for the ladies). The material has a high water repellent factor which means that it is totally waterproof (hence: protection) once put on and all the hatches have been battened down (i.e., the coat closed and zippers fastened). Pull the detachable hoodie on and anything from a summer shower to a full on waterpark assault won’t faze the wearer.
So what’s inside that needs such protection? Depends on what you want to put and where — there’s a pocket on each inside side of the coat, big enough to hold an iPad mini or any smartphone, and a large pocket riding the inside back which can accommodate two MacBook Airs (which is saying a lot).
Of course a digital camera could just as easily be the device in question, as well as any number of things. But what about being able to carry said devices without having them banging around inside? Then just take the coat off, re-engage the two bottom side zippers and pull out a corded buckle from each mini-pocket that just so happens to be made of metal. Insert each of these into their corresponding buckle inside each sleeve and now you’ve a backpack with a 30 lb. weight capacity. Yep, you’ve been wearing a Transformer without knowing it.
But as anyone knows, without power the most high-faulting electronic device is just so much dead meat. And for a Transformer to be really effective, it needs to be powered up. So return the coat to being a coat and attach the solar panel to its back — not with Velcro but honest to gosh push snaps — and then remove the color coordinated Smartphone charger from an interior pocket. Obviously if it has been connected to a device in one of the other pockets for being powered up, first remove the USB connector. With that no longer being an issue, tap the power button on the power pack thrice to turn it on so you can check the LCD panel to see how much power it has. Assuming it could use a charge, attach the cable from the solar panel to it before returning it to a pocket. If you want to get fancy, run the cable along the clips surreptitiously placed on the coat so it can’t snag. Of course you can just run the electricity coming from the solar panel directly to some other device — it’s got 3.5 watts working which is plentiful since you’re not trying to charge a car battery or run a portable TV.
The Smartphone charger, FYI, isn’t some weakling either — it’s rated at 4400 mAH. That roughly translates into the same amount of incoming power as you’d get putting a USB AC adapter into a wall outlet.
That the Evolution Wear Winter Solstice Jacket/Backpack feels good, wears good and performs even better shouldn’t be lost on those who see it — it certainly isn’t lost on anyone who has spent some time wearing it. You want comfort and warmth, you just go buy a nice coat and hope there’s room for any electronic device you need to take along and that the weather doesn’t muck you up. But if you’re looking for a warm wearing garment that compliments the electronic “you” of the 21st Century, then spend the $249 sales price for the White & Blue mens Winter Solstice because this is the only one to wear when going off into the deep end.