Best Golf GPS Reviews & Buying Guide

If you love to play golf and want to take your golf skills to a new level, then probably using the best golf GPS could improve your game. Using a golf GPS, you will be able to get accurate distance details. Talking about golf GPS, well there are too many options available in the market. Some are smartphone-sized, and most popular golf GPS devices are wristwatch based like fitness trackers and smartwatches. But whichever type of golf GPS you choose, you should always go with the one which offers an accurate result and most features you need.

Well to make this easy for you, we have handpicked some of the best golf GPS devices. So let’s just head into the topic without wasting much of the time.

10 Best Golf GPS of 2018

Garmin Approach S60 – Most Popular

The Garmin Approach S60 is a wearable golf GPS watch. The unit comes with stainless steel bezel unit on the top and also has a silicon band attached too.

Garmin Approach S60 has a 1.2-inch touchscreen display. Also on the top of the display, there is a .33mm Tempered Glass HD Screen Protector.

Furthermore, the watch is waterproof too and has features like Plays Like Distance, Auto-Shot tracking, Pin Pointer, Swing Analysis, Touch Targeting and many more.

Garmin Approach S60 also comes with good battery life. The battery will offer you enough juice for more than two rounds.

It also offers more than 40,000+ worldwide courses. In addition to that, the manufacturer keeps pushing new updates of free course.

This watch also does some basic tasks which can easily replace your smartwatch, it displays notifications of WhatsApp, Facebook, etc. directly from your smartphone. You can also disable them if you need to enjoy just your game.

Overall the device is reliable, has great battery life and holds a reasonable price tag and also the bestselling golf GPS.  If you are looking for a basic unit just for yardages or similar minor features, then you should look for less expensive devices.

Pros

  • Accurate distance information.
  • More than 40,000+ worldwide courses.
  • Phone notifications.
  • Reliable.
  • Activity Tracking.

Cons

  • Little bit expensive.
  • Battery life should have been better.

Garmin Approach G8 – Best Handheld

The Garmin Approach G8 is a smartphone-sized handheld golf GPS which comes with a sleek design. On top of the unit, there is a 3-inch display. The resolution of the display is 240 x 400 pixels and it is touchscreen too. Also, the display is bright and easy to read and comes with Big Numbers mode feature so that one doesn’t need to bring the devices near to their eyes in case they want to read.

Under the hood, the Garmin Approach G8 has a rechargeable lithium polymer battery. The battery offers a backup of 15 hours in single charge. Which could get you for more than 3 rounds easily on a full battery.

The unit also has smart notification feature, this helps you to connect your smartphone to the device. Hence, as a result, you start getting texts and email alerts directly to the Garmin Approach G8.

Talking about some other features, the unit comes with Shot Measure, PlayLike Distance, Club Suggestion, Big Numbers and so on.

In order to offer the golfer accurate information, the unit automatically adjusts both uphill and downhill shots. Hence the device offers accurate distance range details to their target.

The unit also comes with more than 30,000 Pre-Loaded Courses from around the globe. Even the Garmin Approach G8 is waterproof, thanks to the IPX7 certification.

In the end, the Garmin Approach G8 comes with all the necessary features that a golf GPS unit should have. However, the unit is quite bulky, but that will not bother you much.

Pros

  • Manual Pin Positioning.
  • Course Preview.
  • Digital Scorecard.
  • Smart Notifications.

Cons

  • Quite Bulky.
  • A little bit expensive.

Garmin Approach S20 – Affordable

The Garmin Approach S20 Watch comes with a sleek design. The watch is available in different color options such as Black, White, Slate and Midnight teal.

Talking about the device, it offers stylish comfort and comes with a high-resolution display. With the help of the device, the golfer will be able to see the distance to hazards like water, sand etc.

Also, there is a green view feature which shows the course in green color and displays manual pin placements. This way players get a much more detailed view and analyze their game.

The autoshot feature which automatically measures the shot distance for post-round analysis to improve your swing consistency, the unit offers the TruSwing feature. With Garmin TruSwing an addon for the Garmin golf devices which tracks your swings letting you analyze and improve your game.

The device automatically downloads new updates when connected to the internet. You will get the smart notification feature as well which allows you to receive notifications for calls, texts, email alerts. Hence, as a result, you can replace the Garmin Approach S20 with your smartwatch.

Another great feature in Approach S60 is that it comes with activity tracking. This reminds you to stay active and displays steps and calories burned. Also, it monitors the time of sleep. Hence it can be used as a fitness band as well.

Apart from all these features, there are more than 40,000 courses included with the device. Also, you can update the courses whenever you want for free. This way your device doesn’t get to be replaced due to lack of courses you need.

Talking about battery, well the battery lasts up to 8 weeks in activity tracking mode but when the GPS is enabled, it only offers a battery life of 15 hours.

Pros

  • Waterproof.
  • Touchscreen display.
  • Excellent battery life.
  • 40,000+ international courses.

Cons

  • Lacks a color screen.
  • No pin pointer.

Izzo Golf Swami 5000

The Izzo Golf Swami 5000 is an affordable handheld Golf GPS it comes with an attractive look and has some pretty decent features.

Talking about the Izzo Golf Swami 5000, it comes with a 2-inch color LCD on the top and the display is visible in sunlight too.

Furthermore, it comes with more than 30,000 preloaded global course maps. Also, the user can download new maps or use the existing maps without paying anything. Even the company has promised to push lifetime updates for this unit.

However, the device is not completely waterproof. But it is water resistant as it has the IPX6 certification.

Talking about the features, the unit is capable of measuring shot distance and comes with a green view with manual pin position.

Talking about the battery life, well under the hood, it has a 1600mah of a lithium battery. The battery is capable of offering 12+ hr battery life which means you can use it for more than 2 rounds easily.

Pros

  • Great battery life.
  • Can Measure shot distance.
  • Sunlight visible display.
  • Affordable.

Cons

  • Not waterproof.
  • Doesn’t show hazards.

Bushnell Neo Ion

The Bushnell Neo Ion is one of the best golf GPS watches and is available in three colors that include, white, charcoal and black. The watch has a comfortable silicon sports band.

Talking about the Bushnell Neo Ion it comes with a tiny display on the top. The display is not a touchscreen one, but it displays all the details.

Furthermore, the unit comes with more than 35000 preloaded courses in over 30 countries. The watch also offers features like auto course recognition, auto hole advance with easy-to-read front, back and center yardages and so on.

The unit also comes with an activity tracking like calculating steps. It also has a distance calculator that calculates the distance up to 4 hazards or layup. Also, it can measure shot distance and has an odometer to calculate distance traveled on a vehicle.

Talking about the battery life, Bushnell Neo Ion has an excellent battery as it offers 16 hours’ battery life. With such high battery life, one can play up to four rounds on a single charge.

It offers all the necessary features which you will need playing. If this device provides you with all the necessary features, then you should get one as it is the most affordable yet feature-rich device you can get.

Pros

  • Excellent battery life.
  • 35000 preloaded courses.
  • Auto course recognition.
  • Step counter.

Cons

  • Display is so tiny.
  • No smart notification feature.

TomTom Golfer 2 SE

The TomTom Golfer 2 SE is also one of the best golf watches that can be found in the market. The model is available in two colors, one of them is the Grey & Orange other one is the Black & Green.

Talking about the TomTom watch, it comes with a tiny yet high-resolution display on the top. Also, the band of the watch is quite comfortable and has a stylish design.

This device had up to 40,000 international courses preloaded and it can easily identify the course you are on or nearest to you. Furthermore, it comes with the Automatic Shot Detection feature which automatically detects and record your shots.

You will also get the green view feature. This will display the right approach and show info on hazard and layout locations in green. It also offers a post-game analysis feature which helps to track and improve your game. This will help you to analyze your shorts and its patterns in the post-game.

Install My Sports app by TomTom which will get you all the details related to your performance allowing you to analyze and modify your gameplay.

Apart from these features, the device also has a water-resistant design and is so lightweight that you would not feel that you are wearing it.

Pros

  • Great design.
  • Offers a good battery life
  • Over 40,000 international courses.
  • Automatic Shot Detection feature.

Cons

  • Small display size.
  • Only water resistant not water proof.

Garmin Approach G10 – Tiny & Portable

The Garmin Approach G10 is a handheld GPS which holds an extremely affordable price tag. The unit comes with a compact and sleek design making it easy to use and comfortable to wear.

Even it is so convenient that you can keep it in your pocket or clip over your belt or bag. It comes with a 1.3-inch black and white sunlight readable display on the top with high resolution.

The Hazards and course target can help you to identify the location of sand traps, water hazards and more. The GPS receiver is a highly sensitive one which quickly displays the yardages to greens, hazards, and doglegs.

You are also getting the green view feature with manual pin placement. The unit can help you to track your stats, like stats of fairways hit and many other ones. There is also the digital scorecard feature that can record your scores during your round. You can even upload and share stats online with the Garmin connect.

The device comes preloaded with over 40,000 international courses and free updates on courses for future changes.

Talking about the battery life, the device lasts for up to 15 hours of battery backup which means one can easily play up to four rounds on a full charge.

Pros

  • Small & light in weight.
  • Over 40,000 preloaded courses.
  • Lifetime support.
  • GreenView with manual pin positioning.

Cons

  • Black and white display.
  • No support for smart notifications.

Garmin Approach G30

The Garmin Approach G30 is the high-end version of the Garmin Approach G10.  It comes with a 2.3 inches’ touchscreen display on the top and unlike the Garmin Approach G10, it has color display.

The unit also comes with features like course view. The course view feature helps in displaying the map of the entire course. You can also zoom in and out the course area. You will also get the green view feature; this will give you an accurate representation of the course.

Just with a click on the course, the device provides you the information of yardage to point. It also provides yardages to the front, back, middle of the course and also the yardages to hazards, layups, and fairways.

You will also get over 40,000 courses preloaded on to the device and ability and download new courses free of cost. Plus, you do not have to pay anything as a subscription or fees for updates.

Overall it is one of the best feature-rich unit with plenty of features a golfer need. You can also attach TruSwing to your club and help you to train your swing and store to analyze your swing.

Pros

  • Touchscreen display.
  • 15 hours’ battery life.
  • 40,000 international courses.
  • Digital Scorecard.

Cons

  • May have few software glitches.

Skycaddie Touch

The Skycaddie Touch is considered as popular golf GPS by many and yet a compact one. The device features a 3-inch color touchscreen display on the top.

Coming to the specifications part, the Skycaddie Touch comes with precise yardages. This helps in getting the dynamic distance between two points on the course.

With Bluetooth, you will be able to connect the unit with the SkyGolf Mobile App. This app is available for iOS and Android device. With the app, you can upload your scorecard and let the app analyze your play.

You will also be getting more than 35000 of preloaded high definition maps. Also by connecting with Bluetooth it will download the course and changes it got over time and provide you with an updated course map.

Overall SkyCaddie Touch is one of the most preferred units and comes with almost all of the features one needs in a unit. The Intelligent Automation feature makes the device very easy to use you wouldn’t need to touch on the display till your 19th hole. This is because the data shown on the display is changed automatically.

Pros

  • Touchscreen display.
  • Sunlight readability.
  • Full graphic hole views.
  • Customized settings.
  • Easiest to use.

Cons

  • Requires a membership.
  • At times it becomes unresponsive.

IZZO Swami Sport

The IZZO Swami Sport is a tiny Golf GPS that and the unit has an affordable price tag making it best buy for people who are new to the game or for people looking to use one to improve their game.

It offers accurate yardages to front, center, and back of the green. In addition to that, it comes with more than 30,000 international courses worldwide.

Plus, the device does not need any subscription to use and you can update courses by connecting to a computer.

Also, it has an easy to use interface with all the details it could provide are shown on the display making it pretty easy to use. Under the hood, it has a rechargeable lithium-ion battery which offers a battery life of two rounds.

Finally, IZZO Swami Sport is a simple and low-cost unit one can find and best for people who are new to the game.

Pros

  • Compact design.
  • Great battery life.
  • Simple and Affordable.

Cons

  • GPS could be glitchy.
  • Not so durable.

These were some of the top golf GPS suggestions and reviews. Now go ahead and check out the above devices and choose the best one that would suit your needs.

However, as a new buyer, you may need little bit extra guide on how to buy a unit. If you do, then we have got your back.

How to buy a Golf GPS? – The buyer’s guide

Golf Watch or Handheld?

If you look at our above-mentioned golf GPS reviews. Then you will notice that we have talked about two types of golf GPS.

One of them is the watch model, and the other one is a Handheld GPS.

Now the question, which is better between these two types of models?

Well, there is no doubt that both of these will do the job and help you eventually. But that is not the only thing you should look while buying one.

In fact, there are a couple of other factors that you have to keep in your mind. Like if you are looking for a device which is portable, then watch models is all you need.

But just in case if you are in search of a unit with a clear readability and some advanced features. Then you have to get yourself a Handheld GPS.

However, to make you understand in a better way. Here are some advantages and disadvantages of both of the types:

Golf Watch Advantages:

  • A watch model does not interfere in your session.
  • Apart from GPS, they also come with many features that help you to improve your skills.
  • Many watch models come with advanced features, lightweight and comfortable to use.
  • Smart notification feature is present in most watches units.
  • Activity tracker feature calculates no of steps, calories burned and distance walked, this way they are also useful as smartwatches that can be used for daily activities.

Golf Watch Disadvantages:

  • Most watch models are pretty expensive.
  • The screen size of these units is quite small. Even sometimes they are not a touchscreen one.

Handheld Golf GPS Advantages:

  • The Handheld GPS devices come with a large screen, and it is easy to use.
  • The handheld device is also small and compact that can easily fit in your pocket.
  • Most of the Handheld units are waterproof and dustproof. As they are meant to work outdoors.
  • Most of them also come with the smart notification feature. Hence you can get texts, calls and email alerts directly to your GPS unit.

Handheld Golf GPS Disadvantages:

  • You have to keep putting in and putting out the GPS unit from your pocket.
  • These type of GPS units cannot be used apart from the course. Hence it is strictly not a recommended product if you are not a regular golfer.

Well, these are some of the top advantages and disadvantages of GPS watch and handheld GPS devices. Now that you have decided, which type of golf GPS you need. It is time to look at the other points that you should keep in your head while buying.

Features to look for in a Golf GPS:

Battery Life:

Without a great battery life, you will not be able to have a great session. Nobody likes to recharge their devices during their session. Hence it is good to get a unit with a great battery life. Any device that has a battery life of more than 8 hours or 2 rounds and more is better, if you are one who plays for a full day then you can opt for devices with a battery life of more than 12 hours or 3 rounds of game.

Readability:

Readability is another important feature that you should look for in a golf GPS. As you already know that Golf is an outdoor game and people play it under the direct sunlight. Now, what if you can’t see what is on your device screen? It will obviously ruin your user experience. Hence it is better to go with a unit which is readable under the direct sunlight. However, most of the handheld units already come with large display making it easy to read.

Preloaded Courses & Updates:

Almost every unit comes with a good number of preloaded course maps and most of the devices provide free updates for the courses. Many will inform you about the area, bunkers, doglegs, hazards and so on. Hence it will be easy for you to play safe if you are on new ground.  Also, most of the units come with free maps, there are some that ask you to get a subscription. So do not forget to check it out before purchasing the GPS unit.

Smart Notifications:

If you are going to get a golf GPS watch, then smart notification is a must needed feature. Smart notification can help you to get notified of your emails, calls, messages and more. Hence you can ever wear it while you are working in an office or at your gym and other daily activities. Even some golf GPS watch works as a fitness tracker, so they can help you during your workout. However smart notifications are not that useful for the handheld GPS units. But it is good to have the feature.

Activity Tracking:

Activity tracking is a useful feature if you are going to get a watch model. It will help you to get information like step counter, sleep tracking, calorie burned, and distance traveled. In other words, golf GPS watch with the activity tracking feature can be used as a fitness tracker. However, with the handheld units, you will not get this feature.

Yardage Measure:

Yardage Measure is also an important factor; it tells the player how far he or she is from the green. Hence, as a result, the player will get an understanding of their hit. Also, most of the golf GPS unit already comes with this feature, so you do not have to worry about it.

Autoshot:

The AutoShot feature is capable of tracking down the game automatically. Like it detects your shot along with the fairway. Moreover, you will get details of the distance and swing tempo. However, this feature is only available in the modern GPS units. Also if you ask us if you need the autoshot feature or not? Then we will say that if you want to improve your game skills, then you must. Even if you are playing at a professional level, you can’t ignore this feature.

Swing Tempo:

The swing tempo feature lets you know about your swing details. The feature is pretty useful if you are trying to improve your swing. As each time you would swing the club, it will display the details about your swing.

Tempo Training:

Tempo training stands for maintaining the same clubhead speed for your every shot. This feature is also a useful one if you are focusing on your golfing skills.

Hazards/Bunkers:

You should always go with the units which offer the location of different hazards and bunkers. This will help you quite a lot while your gameplay. As you will already be aware of the different locations of the hazards and bunkers. Hence it will become quite easy for you to adjust your gameplay. However, most of the modern golf GPS comes with this features.

Scorecard:

A scorecard helps you to keep a track on your scores. Some of the units automatically update the scorecard after you hit the ball. Even in some cases, you have to manually update it. But whichever way you go, a scorecard is a necessary feature if you are serious about your game.

Final words:

This is the buyer’s guide for selecting the best golf GPS device. Now go ahead and see which are the feature you need and then choose the best one for yourself. Anyway if you have any further questions related to the Golf GPS. Then do not forget to comment below and we will surely help you out.

About Author:

Hi, I am the founder of RallyeGPS.com and I am a technology enthusiast and digital marketer. I like to write blogs around gadgets and technology and share my experiences and help others.

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