Ballpark estimate: $199 to $399
When it comes to your golf game, accuracy is everything. Therefore, many golfers like to wear a GPS golf watch to provide them with the key information they need can help them maximize their game and improve their score.
What is a GPS Watch?
You may be familiar with the concept of GPS, or the Global Positioning System, which is a satellite system that relies on special broadcast signals to calculate your location. While this system is the key to helping direct drivers through the maze of roads and neighborhoods to locate destinations, and to help planes navigate the airways safely, now golfers are also usually GPS to measure the distance from their balls to the pins, determine which club to use, and avoid hazards. All of this information can be essential to shaving strokes off their score.
GPS golf watches often tell time and provide other general watch functions, but then they go much further to also provide essential information about the golf course you are playing. This is because these watches recognize where you are and can show you different angles and elements of each hole. Some also allow you to track your score as you go along. In addition, many GPS watches watches also offer health and fitness tracking information that makes them even more valuable, not just on the golf course but also off it, as well. Such features can help you determine how much mileage you are covering throughout the course of the day and how many calories burned. In some cases, the watch can also monitor your pulse, track sleep, and determine other vital signs, as well.
Features to Consider
Exactly what you can expect from your watch will depend on what you select and how much you spend, but some features to consider when comparing different models include:
- The style and design.
- Whether the screen is in color or grayscale.
- Battery life (this is a big one because you don’t want your GPS to die in the middle of your golf game!)
- How many golf courses are already preloaded so you will be able to select the courses where you plan to play.
- Hazard locations.
- How you operate the watch functions (Some are touch screens that can be activated by swiping your finger, other require a push of a button. Still others may take more steps to control).
- Software compatibility with your computer system.
Making it Pay Off
One of the benefits of using a GPS watch on the golf course is that with the specifics of the distance and a view of the hole’s logistics, you’ll know which club will be best suited for your situation. Many of the watches on the market today take their usability further by working with different software programming that enables users to better analyze their game and figure out weak points they want to address.
Better yet, a number of brands have gotten into the game, offering an array of choices. This means that golf watches come in a variety of styles, price points, and sophistication. As a result of the increased popularity, in the last few years, the prices have come down a great deal, making golf GPS watches more affordable for a larger audience.
Brands to Look at
Some of the most popular GPS watches are made by Garmin, which is a technology company based in Switzerland that manufacturers a number of tracking devices for different industries and sports that are widely used worldwide. You can also find TomTom, Microsoft, and much, much more.
Where to Shop
You can find golf GPS watches at a number of sellers both online and in brick-and-mortar stores. For instance, you can buy one through a golf store such as Edwin Watts Golf, Golfsmith, and the PGA Tour Superstore. You can also shop at electronic stores and office supply chains that offer electronics including Best Buy, Staples, and Office Depot, as well as at discount houses like Target and Walmart. You can also look at sporting good stores including Dick’s Sporting Goods.
Cost of a GPS Golf Watch
The cost of a GPS golf watch depends on what you select. On the more affordable end of the spectrum, you can select a Garmin S20 basic model for about $199. For this price, you’ll get tracking, distances, information about hazards, and more. Or, for about double that amount, or around $300, you can get a Garmin S6, which also provides information about your swing to help you improve your score. There are also a number of watches you can find that fall between these two prices. For instance, the TomTom Golfer is about $350. This option has a black and white display and make sit easy to track the distance to the pin. There’s also the Microsoft Band 2, which sells for $250 and is made with input from TaylorMade, and maintains an integrated score that blends key information about your round with health tracking and information. These are just a few of the many options from which you can select.
A Budget Option
While a GPS golf watch is a popular option, if you prefer to have a sensor that gives you helpful insight into your game without attaching to your wrist you can also explore the range of clip-on trackers such as the Zepp 2 golf sensor, which sells for $199 plus. There are a few other similar options you can find that cost between $120 and $250.