Today's blog post is going to explore the Best Golf GPS Watches on the market today, including our top pick, best four watch comparison table, detailed reviews, your Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) and our analysis of the most important buying factors. Thanks for reading!
Golf is, and always has been, a game of measurements. Knowing distance between yourself and hazards on the course, the green, and knowing the distance you can hit the ball are all elements that are keys to success in the game of golf.
It used to be, years ago, that the best way to tell yardage while playing was the use of binoculars. This wasn't the best method, however, as most of the golfers’ game boiled down to just guesswork.
But today, with advancements in technology, inaccurate guesswork is a thing of the past, with a variety of devices helping golfers to narrow down exact yardage like never before. One of these devices are golf GPS watches.
If you're in a hurry, here is our top choice:
Best Golf GPS - Comparison Table
If you see a gadget you’re interested in, click the link below. Otherwise, keep reading below for our reviews.
Best Golf GPS - Detailed Reviews for 2020
1. Garmin Approach S20
Get yourself a smart watch with all golf GPS features you could ask for. The Garmin Approach S20 relies on a database of 40,000 golf courses and comes with free updates for those. It has never been easier to keep track of your round, compare, and analyze your data than with the S20.
At the same time you stay connected and will be notified about that email that you've been waiting for. Through Garmin Connect you can collect enough data over time to get a really good understanding of your strengths and weaknesses - even on a per club level. 15 hours of battery life in GPS mode should also be plenty in case you forgot your charger for a weekend trip.
2. Garmin Approach S10
Best on a Budget
The Garmin Approach S10 shines on the level of simplicity. It's a very smooth experience to keep track of your round of golf and improve your performance on one of the 40,000 pre-loaded golf courses.
Its features are a little more basic compared to the S20, but it does those basics very well and you won't regret getting it.
3. TecTecTec ULT-G
2nd Best Overall
Very similar to the Garmin S10, the TecTecTec ULT-G prides itself to be a very simple and effective tool. It's beautiful to take the ULT-G out of the box and be ready to hit the golf course only a couple minutes later. This is literally how easy it is to use this amazing gadget.
The 38,000 pre-loaded courses are automatically detected and there are no ongoing fees.
4. Bushnell Neo Ion 2
3rd Best Overall
Bushnell is a brand well-known in the rangefinders niche of the golf industry. However, they also produced an amazing GPS watch with the Neo Ion 2. The battery life should be enough for three rounds of golf and should you ever find yourself on a golf course that is not among the 36,000 courses covered, you can consider yourself really unlucky.
Easy wireless updates are the frosting on the cake. Enjoy your upgraded game.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Why should I get a Golf GPS Watch?
The game of golf has changed significantly over the last few decades. Gone are the days when your main objective on the course was to simply hit the ball as hard and as close to the hole as you possibly can. Today’s game is as physical as it is strategic. Instead of trying to outdrive the competition at the tee, most golfers nowadays would look at their second shot first and choose to just hit the center of the green on their first shot. But how are they able to estimate the distance to the green so accurately? The answer is right there, strapped around their wrists.
What features can I expect from a Golf GPS?
These watches are devices that project a map display that includes hazards and distance to the green, as well as other vital information for the golfer, all in the form of a convenient wristwatch. Some of them can even tell the time!
Over the years, golf GPS watches have become an integral part of any self-respecting golfer’s arsenal. Not only do they help golfers make better shot decisions, they also eliminate the need for lengthy information gathering. If you are looking to improve your golf game, but are still on the fence about whether you should be getting a golf GPS watch or not, then maybe these reasons can help persuade you.
Golf GPS watches measure distances easily and accurately. If you play the game often, you will have learned by now that the distance markers on many golf courses today are surprisingly inaccurate. How often have you come up a few meters short of your target just because you based your calculations on them? Golf GPS watches use satellite technology in order to measure the distance from where you tee off to where the ball rolls to a stop, with a certain degree of accuracy. In today’s game, knowing just how far you are from the hole is a definite advantage.
Having a golf GPS watch lets you play to your strengths. Because your golf GPS watch gives you fairly accurate distance readings, course management becomes easy. Consider this example: Assume that the club that you are most comfortable with is your trusty 6-iron. You know that you can hit that ball and send it flying a good 150 to 160 meters with it, nine out of ten times. According to the preloaded course map on your golf GPS watch, you are about 382 meters from the hole. If you plan to use your 6-iron on your second shot, you will need to hit your tee shot to a distance of about 222 meters. You take out your 3-wood instead of your driver, and you set yourself up for a second shot that you’ve only done successfully nine out of ten times.
How can a Golf GPS Watch help me with choosing the right clubs for my strokes?
Your golf GPS watch can tell you how far you hit with each club. If you’ve been struggling with your game lately, or you’re just learning to play golf for the first time, knowing how far you can send the ball with each club in your bag will help you a lot. Golf GPS watches have a “shot distance” feature that with a press of a button, allows you mark where you took the shot and where the ball goes. It can then tell you the distance between the two marks. With enough practice, you will soon learn how far you are able to accurately hit the ball with each club. This is an important part of shot management, because it can help you decide whether you want to be playing your next shot with a 5-iron or a 4-iron.
How will my game improve with a Golf GPS?
You can play faster and more efficiently without sacrificing the quality of your game. Many of the GPS watches that are available in the market today already come pre-loaded with course maps and distance measurements, which means you no longer need to look at brochures, read books, or refer to inaccurate distance markers. Doing away with information gathering allows you to focus on your game, so that you can get to the hole with as few shots as possible. Should you happen to be playing on a course whose map isn’t pre-loaded, you can always upload the course map to your golf GPS watch before you tee off.
How much money should I expect to spend on a good Golf Watch?
There is a golf GPS watch for you, regardless of your budget or skill level. Whether you’re an amateur or a professional golfer, there is bound to be a golf GPS watch that will help you improve your game. Because manufacturers continually try to improve their design and incorporate as many different features on their devices as possible, GPS watches go for around $100 to more than $400. Times have changed, and golfers today have become far more strategic with their game than ever before. If you want to lower your handicap and be the star of the fairway, getting a golf GPS watch is undoubtedly a step in the right direction.
You may be wondering what makes GPS watches any better than other golf tools, such as laser rangefinders and phone apps.
Well, to start, these devices give you a convenient option for course measurement, detailing vital course information right from your wrist, and without the need for updates and subscription fees like you would need with a phone app. These watches even have the capability to measure speed and playtime, and a few of them are even able to keep track of score for you, making them even more convenient.
Buying Factors for Golf GPS Watches
There are a ton of these GPS watches that are available on the market today. Many of these watches come with a variety of different prices and extra features. For that reason it is important to know what to look for before buying any of the products.
For a more comprehensive list of buying factors, check this buying guide for golf GPS which includes handheld devices.
When buying a watch, you will want one that has at least the basic features, such as distance to the green, as a standard. Every one of these watches should at least be able to give you accurate yardage to hazards and other landmarks around the course, and if they can't so at least that, then you should pass on it.
To go along with the above, you may want to look for a watch that has special features you may like, such as blu-tooth or score card. These features are not needed, however, and can sometimes cost more, so it is really up to the player if they want these things with their watch.
Ease of Use
You will also want a watch that is easy to use, so you are not fiddling around with various switches and other things while in the middle of play. If you have to stop dead during your game just so you can figure out which switch does what on your watch, then chances are that it is not the watch for you.
It probably is a given, but when you buy a GPS watch, you are going to want one that has good battery life. Nothing would be worse than being in the middle of the game and having your watch go out on you, so you will want a watch with a battery that can last you from the first tee to the eighteenth hole.
Maps & Courses
Maps for courses should come pre-loaded on your watch, but seeing as you never know what course you'll be playing on next, you will want a watch that has as many courses loaded as possible. This way, no matter where you play, your watch can likely provide you with an accurate representation of the course you are on.
Finally, be wary of watches that make you pay a subscription fee to use them. These watches should come with all their features and unlimited use at the time of purchase, so you should never have to pay monthly to use them.
Quick Summary of the Best GPS Golf Watches in 2020
If you want to get a GPS watch and retire your smartphone or rangefinder, then these five choices for best golf GPS watches are sure to give you what you are looking for. Thanks for taking the time to join us today, and we'll see you on the links!