Confused choosing the best smartwatch for golf? Not anymore!
The Golf GPS watch is just like another Smartwatch but specifically designed for golfers. It has everything that you might want to keep up with your or improve it. From tracking your shots, scores, to giving you insights about the course along with the placement of the holes and their distance from your location, it does everything! Sounds fascinating, doesn’t it?
In the era of technological advancement, nothing seems to be impossible. From waterproof watches for swimming to kid-friendly smartwatches we have it all. The same is the case when it comes to applying it to take things up a notch for the professional golfers.
Before writing this post, we did huge research, interviewed 23 professional golfers & 14 beginners and asked them for things that would matter while buying in the watch and also asked for a few watch recommendations then. After collecting the model names, we organized a game and 7 members of our team tested different models during it. After this amount of rigorous testing, we decided to come up with this ultimate list of the best smartwatches for Golf!
Disclaimer: While there are no brand collaborations, We still might make money from this article. If you buy using our affiliate links. We’ll get a small commission without you having to pay extra for the product. The earnings from them help us keep up with the work and research, so that you don’t buy a bad product next time!
1. Best Smartwatch For Golf: Garmin Approach S20 Golf GPS Watch
- Over 40,000 preloaded Golf courses
- Display Screen of 168 x 68 Pixels
- Digital Scorecard to keep track of the scores
- Autoshot round Analyzer
- Waterproof up to 50 meters
- Weight 1.6 ounces
- Green View Display Feature
- 15 hours approx Battery Life
The Garmin Approach S20 is a versatile GPS golf watch with a super sleek and extremely lightweight design. It is known for its amazing battery power that lasts as long as for 15 hours with GPS tracking enabled just in a single charge.
The watch is available in four colors on Amazon US i.e. Black, White, Midnight Teal, and Slate. It is one elegant designed watch for newbies as well as professional Golfers, looks more like an Apple Watch. If we talk about the impressive features that it provides, we have Auto Shot Round Analyzer. This features measures the distance of the shots with the ability to auto-record them for further analysis. Not just this, we have over 40,000+ course preloaded into it to make you get started with.
Activity Tracking features enable to keep you active even if you are off the course. This feature keeps track of your Heart Rate, Calorie count, hours of sleep, etc. It includes more or less every feature of fitness in it.
Apart from this, the watch pairs itself to the Garmin TruSwing sensor to help you improve your swing consistency by recording every shot you take. Even if you are out in the sunlight playing your heart out, you can still read out the notifications and analysis on your watch because of the exceptional display quality.
The Green View Display enables the watch to help you check the actual shape and layout of the green and reposition the pin as you like. Just like any other smartwatch, it also provides you notifications from your smartphone about the calls and messages to keep you on track.
One of the reasons why I recommend it is because it comes with Garmin Connect, an online community of Golfers who uses Golf watches from Garmin. Using the app, you can get connected with 1000s of other players. It can also help you play, share and compare your scores.
The users are loving the watch since it is very much within the budget and also true to its price range. So, what is not to love about the watch, it has everything you are looking for to start with. However, there are too many features which can make it overwhelming.
- Waterproof watch
- Super Lightweight
- Great battery life
- No membership or subscription needed
- Activity Tracking included
- No Touch Screen Display
- Not an attractive UI
- Too many features which all might not use.
2. Best Runner Up: Callaway GPSy Watch
- Over 30,000 Preloaded Golf Courses
- Display Size: 1.28 Inches
- Auto Course Recognition, Auto Hole Advance, and odometer
- Accurate Distance to Greens and hazards
- Up to 10 hours Battery Life
- Automatic Scorekeeper
The Callaway GPSy is ranked #2 in our list. It has a very elegant design and provides fast and reliable distances to the green at your convenience. It comes with over 30,000+ golf courses maps preloaded to provide the best information in whichever course you decide to play on. Not only this, but it just weighs 2.08 ounces which is incredibly lightweight and easy to carry around hassle-free.
This Callaway watch automatically locates your course as soon as you turn on the GPS of the device. You have access to the distance of the front, back, and center of the greens and keep track of everything with just a glance at it. With the Auto course recognition, auto hole advance helps the user to keep track of the course, shot distance, scorecard and helps maintain the time and date through satellite.
Last but not least this device is also a beast when it comes to battery power. It can go on for over 10 hours with a single charge. Sound good enough. Right? You can find the watch in two colors white and black, The white variant comes with a green strap. The choice is yours. Not much technological complication for those who have just started and feels a bit hectic to manage the watch timely. It is all embedded and preinstalled.
This could be the right fit for you at this reasonable price and affordable range. Perfect for beginners and if you are a professional well it works like a charm.
- Excellent Battery
- Automatic scorekeeper
- Only 2 color variants
- Simple Design
- Not Waterproof
3. Best Golf GPS Activity Tracker: Garmin Approach X40
- Over 40,000 Preloaded Golf Courses
- Display screen 160 x 68 pixels
- Green View Display
- Activity Tracking Technology
- Heart Rate Monitor
- 10 hours + Battery life
- Tru Swing Technology
The Garmin Approach X40 is one of the lightest and thinnest Golf GPS watch in the market. It has a design that represents more of a Fitness Band than an actual watch. There are super cool features that set it apart from the other Golf GPS watches we have seen.
Once you have totally understood the technology behind the hazard yardage screen and keep track of every any kind of hazard on the course. Just like other golf watches this too comes up with preloaded courses. It currently has around 40,000 courses and more to keep you ahead of all.
Coming over to the Green View Display, this technology is capable of showing you the shape and distance of the green area from your watch’s screen. It was pretty unexpected looking at the feature due to the thin design of the watch but they managed to pull it through with the best they can.
Now the most prized possession of all, its powerful Activity Tracking mechanism. It can track your movements, heart rate, calories burned, etc. It can help you to track your activity on or off course. Also, the heart rate monitoring is available 24×7 to get you the best results every time.
Nonetheless, it is an amazing piece of technology that can last up to 10 hours of using it along with the GPS. Also, the Auto Tracking system keeps in check of every shot you have taken and provides a detailed report. You can also enjoy the Tru Swing technology that would give you insights and 3D animations of your shots to help you improve your shots.
- 40,000 Preloaded courses available
- Heart Rate Monitor
- Bluetooth Technology
- Powerful Activity Tracker
- Super thin design
- Smaller Screen
- Short Distance Calculator
- Price higher as expected
4. Best Basic Golf GPS Watch: Golf Buddy WTX
- Touch User interface
- Lightweight and slim design
- 38,000+ Preloaded courses
- Automatic Course and Hole Recognition
- Interchangeable Outer Screen
- Activity Tracking
The Golf Buddy WTX is the best entry-level smartwatch that golfers in the market love! It has an amazingly slim design and weighs only 8.8 ounces. The most attractive part of this it is its extremely affordable price with features similar to the costly watches available.
The colored screen of this watch enables you to check out the pre-programmed 38,000+ courses to get you on board. Making it even more portable, you can wear it as a watch even off-field. Just sync in with your smartphone and it works like a charm just like any other smartwatch.
Dynamic Green View features stands out to be a great addition to this which allows the user to read the Distance of you from the greens and the hazards that are located on the map. With the Automatic hole recognition, one can understand the map of the field you are playing on and track the hole on it. Not just this after every shot you will be able to measure the distance of the shot you have taken and keep a report of everything.
Additional Features includes the act that it is Waterproof and the battery lasts up to a decent amount of time of around 8 hours. Surely, battery power could have been better to make it a perfect fit for what one is looking for in a watch as a whole. Totally budget-friendly and has every feature you would need on the field.
The Golf Buddy WTX reviews on Amazon received by the user are completely mixed up including some positive as well as negative feedback. It is just a case of reliability but overall a great product to go for.
- Waterproof Watch
- Touch Screen Display
- Smartphone Compatible
- Not a perfect Battery power
- Not very reliable
- Icons too small to be read
5. Best Women’s Golf GPS Watch: TomTom Golfer 2
- 40,000+ Preloaded Courses
- Smart Shot Detection
- Automatic Scorecard
- Unique Green and Hazard Graphics
- Round Tracking
The TomTom Golfer 2 is lightweight and an updated version of the previous TomTom watches. It just weighs 2.8 ounces and the design looks stunning with amazing features given to this watch.
To begin with its features, you cannot ignore but notice that it has preloaded over 40,000 courses for you to get started with at any point in time. While playing on the field you can easily track the distance of your shots through the auto Shot detection feature. It records and keeps track of all your shots taken and analyzed likewise throughout the game.
The face of the watch has a display of 9.8×1.4×0.5 inches and the design is pretty simple yet intriguing. This device has been given a widescreen which is a great thought to give it more surface area for display.
It lasts up to 11 hours with being in GPS mode which is a pretty decent power. If you are using it without the GPS mode switched on it is bound to last a lot longer. We also have Auto Scorecard feature which makes things very simple when it comes to writing down the score. This solves the issue and makes the play even more interesting.
Round Tracking is yet another feature setting it apart. It records and gives an analysis of the scores, time, distance and moreover the number of calories that are burnt. As the customer review on Amazon, it is a great buy if you have a low budget since the features are incredible.
Also Read: Best Smartwatches for Women in 2020
- Waterproof to up to 40 meters
- Great Battery Life
- Auto Tracking system
- Easy to read Display
- No touch screen
- Low tech screen
- Greenview Display not up to the mark
6. Best Value for Money: Bushnell Golf Excel Watch
- 36,000+ Preloaded Courses
- Bluetooth Integration with Smartphone
- Shot Distance Calculator
- 3D Flyovers
- Auto Course Recognition
- Up to 4 Hazard Distances Per Hole
The Bushnell Golf Watch is a very classy looking design and is available in 5 different colors options on Amazon i.e. Black, Charcoal, Navy, Silver, and White.
The most exclusive part of the watch is that it can be connected with your smartphone through Bluetooth and provide call notifications, messages and calendar alerts on your Smartwatch. It weighs only 2.4 ounces which is super light and can be worn all day. Moreover, it comes with preloaded Golf courses of about 36,000+ and will auto located the course for you with the help of GPS installed in the Watch.
Moving on, the watch has an LCD display with backlight and its dimensions are 10 x 1.7x 0.4 inches which are pretty decent to look at. Though as per the reviews by the users, it becomes difficult to watch the screen in sunlight, still as per the price range everything works well. With the new 3D flyover view you can get a hold of the view of the hazards on the course, hole distances and greens.
The battery backup is of about 14 hours with a single charge along with the GPS function. This is the best battery-powered device Bushnell has produced till now. Though there is always a catch, the more functions you are going to use, the more battery it eats up and might need another charge quickly. Bushnell Golf watch has the feature where it will be able to record your shot distance every time and provide a brief analysis of the shots played.
With a great line-up of all the features available in this newly updates Bushnell watch, everything seems to be working out. There are certain disadvantages associated with it. But the price range seems to be good enough and worth buying.
- Affordable price range
- No membership or subscription needed
- Long Battery life
- Calculates Shot Distance
- No touch screen Display
- Reported issue of being too Dim
- Not perfectly accurate in some places(User Reported)
7. Best Basic Golf GPS Watch: Bushnell Neo Ion
- Pre-loaded with 35,000+ Golf Courses
- 4 Hazard distances per hole
- Auto Course Recognition and Auto Hole Advance
- Shot Distance Calculator
- Round Odometer
- Battery life for three full round between charges
The Bushnell Neo Ion Golf GPS watch is a very basic yet newest addition to the Bushnell collection. The unique features of it along with the price range is everything you are looking for. The sporty look to this wrist watch makes it even more intriguing and can be worn throughout the day.
To begin with, it is pre-loaded with 35,000+ golf courses that can be accessed whenever you require. There are no subscription or membership fee for these courses. It is absolutely free and comes along with the watch. This Bushnell Neo Ion weighs about 4.8 ounces which isn’t too heavy to be carried around and has a display size of 6 x 8 x 4 inches which is truly amazing as compared to other watches in its range. We have three color variants available in Amazon i.e. White, Black, and Charcoal.
The Auto course recognition and hole advance feature help to automatically recognize every hole on the field and keep you updated with no manual intervention. It also has the feature to calculate shot distance every time you take a shot. When it comes to battery power it is one of the best among the list. Can go up to 3 three rounds of play with one single charge which is more than enough. Some additional features that make it unique are that it is Waterproof, and has a pedometer.
- Long Battery Life
- Shot Distance Calculator
- Super Lightweight
- Free Courses available
- Accurate Yardages
- Time function doesn’t work too well(reviewed by user)
- Software Issues
- Reported trouble with charging
8. Best For Shot Tracking: Shot Scope V2 Smart Golf Watch with GPS
- 40,000+ Pre-loaded Golf Courses
- Automatic Performace Tracking
- Shot Tracker System
- Laser RangeFinder
- Pin Collect Technology
The Shot Scope V2 Smart Golf Watch is one of the best shot trackers available in the market. It is made available with about 20 tags that easily fits in the back of the clubs and are used to record the data from the shots that you take each time for further analysis.
This is one cheap golf watch when compared to others that we have reviewed with features somewhat similar. It is a very lightweight device even though it looks a bit bulky but weighs only 7 ounces. You can wear it all day and won’t feel a thing. The tags that are placed collected data from more than 100 tour statistics including every area of the game.
With the help of Auto performance tracking, the device does the GPS tracking on it own and you need to do anything manually to track your round. Also, the dynamic Yardages help to provide details of the Front, middle and back of the Greens moving along with you and detailed insight of the course. The battery life as reviewed manages to keep running for just one round and a little more the next round after which it does need charging.
The Club Sense technology makes it easier for logging on to the swings automatically, also by removing practice swings the watch will gather the data of club used and location of every shot and put it up on a map for an aerial view. According to the Shot scope V2 reviews provided by the users, the watch is very easy to set and use for a long term and the data it provides is very much accurate and top-notch.
- Accurate Data Statistics
- Excellent for shot tracking
- Easy to use and set up
- Poor battery life
- Software Issues
- Not very great UI
9. Best Battery Life: Garmin Approach S4 GPS Golf Watch
- 40,000+ Preloaded Golf Courses
- Battery Life up to 10 hours
- Water Resistant up to 10 meters
- Manual Pin Positioning
- Green View Display
The Garmin Approach S4 is on the most classy looking watch you will find in the list of mentioned GPS Golf Watches. It is visually stunning and is available in two colors on Amazon which are Black and White. This Garmin Golf Watch weighs just 2.8 ounces which means you will not feel its presence in your hands all day long.
The touchscreen display size 2.4 x 1.8 x 0.6 inches which can be read while in sunlight gives HD display. S4 is the size of a typical sports watch preloaded with over 40,000 courses with no membership fees making it totally free of cost. Manual Pin positioning feature allows you to manually move the pin to a location and get the most accurate distances, it is that easy.
The Green view display gives the front, middle and back view of the greens and yardages with its true shape no matter wherever you are. It works just like any other smartwatch that can be connected with your smartphone and you can receive a text and call notification directly to your touchscreen watch.
Apart from this, you get to keep track of your scorecard through Digital Scorecard and can easily manage and share it with your friends seamlessly. Most importantly, you can get on with all of the above features in a day with 10 hours of battery life on a single charge. With all of these incredible features, it is totally worth every penny and a must-buy for every golfer out there.
- Exceptional Battery power
- Touchscreen HD Display
- Smart Notifications
- Sensitive Screen
- Difficulty in Identifying courses(User Review)
- Some Battery Issues(User Review)
10. Cheap Golf GPS Watch: Bushnell Neo Ion 2
- 36,000+ Preloaded courses
- Bluetooth updates Wireless courses
- Auto Course Recognition and Auto Hole Advance
- Shot Distance Calculator
- 4 Hazard Distances per Hole
- Battery Life- 3 rounds per charge
The Bushnell Neo Ion 2 is the updated version of the Bushnell Neo Ion Golf watch. They have similar features mostly but totally stand out in many cases overall. It is visually stunning and has a very sleek design. It weighs about 4.8 ounces which is pretty light and easy to be carried around if you want to wear it all day. Comes in two color variant being Black/Blue and Silver/Green.
This Bushnell GPS watch is embedded with over 36,000 courses that have no hidden membership charges or fees. The auto hole advance feature makes you identify the next hole and everything about it by tracking your activity. With the Shot distance calculator, you are able to record every distance of the shot you play, but unfortunately, you cannot save it for further analysis. The Bushnell Golf App has been proven to be very useful with an easy to use interface which is also another golf app for the Apple watch.
It is the best rangefinder watch available out there. You can easily measure the distance of a target hole from your place with this particular feature that sets this device apart from all the others. Most importantly, Bluetooth helps to update the course wirelessly and hassle-free. It can work for up to 12 hours in one single charge which is enough to cover three full rounds of play on the field. Also, it takes into account of the steps you have walked making it a great deal when it comes to the calorie count.
The device is priced very decently and is well within budget. It has probably every feature one needs in a Golf GPS watch and makes it one of the best of all we have been reviewed overall.
- Easy to use and set up
- Superb Battery life
- Bluetooth Integrated
- Step Counter
- No USB plug included in the kit
- Reported issue of freezing Display at times
- Reported issue of lost GPS Location
Golf GPS Watch – The Buyer’s Guide
It all comes down to the various features and options in a device that sets it apart from all the others available in the market. Surely it is not an easy task deciding which is good for you since considering you are totally new to this.
The watches that have been listed above have been selected and reviewed carefully taking everything in mind to which would be the best for you. We have listed some important guidelines to understand every feature so that you can select accordingly.
1. Preloaded Golf Courses
Earlier, things were pretty hectic when we had to download 1000’s of course manually from our computer through wires. But since the things have advanced a lot, the Golf watches comes with preloaded courses from 30,000 to 45,000 in number that can be accessed very easily.
Some are updated automatically through the wireless connection while some needs to be updated by connecting it to the smartphone via Bluetooth technology. It has become pretty simple and has reduced manual intervention at a huge level. The GPS navigation here plays a huge role since they tend to update all the courses depending on your current location and thus give you a better view of the green, and the hazards.
2. GPS Navigation: The Much Needed Feature!
The GPS navigation makes it easier for every watch to keep track of everything and your every movement. From auto course recognition to tracking your every shot. It is all a part of the navigation that the watch allows. It automatically locates the course which you are playing on via GPS technology and continues to update it as we move further no matter whichever course is it. You can also locate and have a visual look at the greens through this GPS technology.
3. Optical RangeFinders
These rangefinder watches are basically a feature where the Golfer is able to get the precise measurement on distances of the hole from the golfer, time, scorecard digitally available on the watch, also determining the positioning of the course. This feature is mostly found in Bushnell and Garmin watches and is very essential in every Golf GPS watch.
4. Swing Analysis
The swing analysis helps to analyze the swing action of the Golfer. It includes the tracking of the action, angle, swing speed, swing path, the speed of the ball and all of this collectively helps in analyzing the further course of action and improvise further on the next shots for better results.
5. Battery Life
It is one of the most important factors when it comes to reviewing and choosing the best Golf GPS watch. You need a very powerful battery life if you have to complete the 18 holes every time you play. A poor battery will just ruin the spirit of the game whereas a great battery life will make things very smooth. Most of the watches last up to 3 rounds of play while some do not go up to even a single round. So it is much-needed attention while choosing the Golf watch for yourself.
Smartwatches are mostly equipped with a touchscreen display, it makes it easier to navigate and scroll around with the various features it includes. There are various Golf watches equipped with it whereas some do not have the feature but still even without it things would work it. Since the alternate option would be just to click on the buttons that are on the normal watch we wear every day. Having a little extra though makes things better.
7. Green View Mapping Display: For Better Aiming and Shots
This feature allows the Golfer to look over the actual green which is not accessible to an extent. It gives you an entire idea of which area is covered by green and the shape of it on your watch so that you can select your shot and aim accordingly. There are times when things end up pretty nasty and the ball ends up too far from the destined location, instead, this feature will make things easier.
8. Waterproof: Why is it important?
A very important thing needs to be taken into account while selecting the perfect watch. Whether it is waterproof or water-resistant. These two are an entirely different thing. A waterproof watch would be more beneficial since it will not be affected no matter the distance it is submerged in the water. While water resistance may or may not be entirely safe from an accidental drop in the water or during rainfall.
9. Digital Scorecard
Manually noting down the score every time during the play makes it very time consuming and a bit hectic. So to solve this issue, some watches have been equipped with a digital scorecard that will automatically keep track of your scores and update you after every shot and at the end of the play to make things easier.
10. Ease of Use and Comfort
It isn’t everyone’s cup of tea to understand the technology and especially when you are new to everything. So it is very important that the watch you buy is easy to set and understand since being comfortable will help you stick with the device for a long period of time. Heavy watches are yet another cause of uncomfortable experiences and thus it will be of no use for the long term.
Just like any other smartwatch, even the Golf watch comes with features where you can track the calorie count, steps, heart rate, etc. There are some watches with this feature and it makes it totally worth it since it can be worn for everyday use as a normal smartwatch. All these are some of the features that bring more comfort and easier to use as well.
11. Price of the Watch
Lastly, yet the most important factor every buyer looks at in the end to decide which one to go for. There are different ranges for every watch. Some are a bit expensive but has some great features and would totally be worth it while some at cheap rates too are a standout. It all comes down to you. If you feel you can add some extra bucks from your pocket then always go for the best option rather than settle for just a good one.
This is pretty much everything you need to know and the best watches have been mentioned above with a second thought. So do not hesitate or look away since they all have been carefully reviewed along with the customer’s feedback who have been using it.
For Beginners, we always recommend not to spend a huge amount on such watches as you are still learning and you can always buy a good one later when you have got hands on to this sport. While for the professionals, being the best in the industry you can always vouch for the ones with the most accurate data that will improve your skills further.
We have some affordable ranges while some are a bit expensive yet worth buying. If you are looking for a great design and ready to settle for lesser features or if you have a low budget just go for the cheap GPS watch making sure the features are also present there. We might have some reliability issue with certain watches so brand identity matters a lot in such matters. Do not forget to always look at the customer feedback and rating before buying any product in the end.
There are going to be 100’s of such options available, every one providing different verdicts about every item and frankly, it is a big headache going through them all. So, we are here to save your time and energy. Golf is a great sport and technology has made things even easier to enhance your skills in the best way possible. Feel free to give us any feedback or contact us with any queries. Keep Golfing!
Things we are doing to keep this guide better?
- Working on an infographic for the Buyer’s guide
- Continuously hunting for better models (Comment if you find a better recommendation)
- Buying units to review all of the best models to provide a better understanding.
- Interviewing professional golfers to find out other important things.