To say golf technology has changed over the years is an understatement.
GPS watches and bands have become increasingly popular with golfers of all abilities. The main function of a golf GPS is to provide you with accurate yardage readings while on the golf course. Want to know how many yards you are to the pin? A simple glance at your watch and you’ll know exactly how far away you are, so you’ll know what club to hit. But the GPS watches offer so much more. Many standard functions on GPS watches include stat tracking and compiling, front, center, and back of green distances, auto course recognition, and shot distance calculators. They are designed to help you make the right decisions and shots on the golf course, resulting in improved scores.
Browse a wider selection of golf GPS watches and bands if this list doesn’t have the style you’re looking for. But keep reading below to see some of the most popular GPS watches available today. And if a watch isn’t your style, check out our post on the best golf rangefinders on the market today.
1. Garmin Approach S20 Golf Watch
The Garmin Approach S20 Golf Watch combines style, comfort and performance at a very reasonable price. Not only can you get accurate yardages to the front, back, and middle of the green, as well as shot distances, new technology and functions highlight the watch. AutoShot Round Analyzer, which tracks your shots, measures distance and records shot locations so you can assess your round. Add a Garmin TruSwing, attach to your club, and that sensor will track your swing to help improve your swing and consistency. The S20 also has a Green View Display, which shows you the exact shape and layout of the green. Available in four colors — Black, White, Midnight Teal, and Slate — the S20 contains over 40,000 pre-loaded international courses (with free updates), is sun-light readable, the high-resolution touchscreen is golf glove-friendly, it will alert you on smartphone notifications, and it comes with one lithium polymer battery.
Price: $149.99 (25 percent off MSRP)
- Pre-loaded with over 40,000 international golf courses
- AutoShot Round Analyzer measures shot distances for stat analysis
- Golf glove-friendly touchscreen display
- Digital Scorecard allows you to save, review, share and print scorecards
- Can’t edit the list of clubs preloaded into the watch
- Some users feel there are too many options and functions
2. Bushnell Neo Ion Golf GPS Watch
The watch is pre-loaded with over 35,000 courses in over 30 countries and a long-lasting battery (included with the purchase), the Bushnell Neo Ion Golf GPS Watch provides functionality and comfort in a sleek design. It gives accurate yardage measurements in front, center and back distances to the green. The easy-to-use Bushnell Neo Ion also features auto course recognition and auto hole advance, practically making your watch a golf course encyclopedia in a compact model. Other highlights include hazard and layup distances (up to four per hole), a shot distance calculator, a comfortable dual injected silicone band, and a course step odometer.
Price: $144.58 (15 percent off MSRP)
- Pre-loaded with over 35,000 courses in over 30 countries
- Long battery life (play 3 rounds between charges)
- Legal for tournament play
- Auto course recognition
- Some users found the charging mechanism difficult
- Some users experienced satellite issues
3. Callaway GPSy Golf GPS Watch
Not only does Callaway put out top-notch equipment and clothing, they also make high-quality and high-performance GPS watches. The GPSy Watch is a perfect example. Expect accurate yardage measurements from front, center, and back of green distances as well as layup and hazard distances. The scorekeeping function tracks scores, but also green in regulation and putts per round. Other features include waterproof construction, shot distance measurement, over 30,000 pre-loaded courses worldwide, auto course and hole recognition, and a long-lasting battery, which is included.
Price: Shown here at $171.96
- Scorekeeper tracks greens in regulation and putts per round
- Auto course recognition
- No annual fees or subscriptions
- Some users felt the screen was difficult to read when watch got wet
- Some users felt the battery life was not as good as advertised
4. TomTom Golfer 2 GPS Watch
TomTom has packed a bunch of useful options in its sleek Golfer 2 GPS Watch. With automatic shot detection and shot history analysis, your game is certain to improve with these new functions. You’ll get accurate yardage measurements and thanks to the green- and hazard-view options, you’ll know exactly what distance you’ll need to hit the ball to stay out of the water or bunker. Other features include water-resistant construction up to 40 meters, over 40,000 pre-loaded courses (and free course updates), lightweight slim design, wireless syncing, and complete round tracking. The TomTom 2 also comes with a charger, a user manual, and a battery life up to 11 hours.
Price: $139.99 (44 percent off MSRP)
- Shot history analysis
- Automatic shot detection
- Easy-to-view green and hazard graphics
- Water-resistant to 40 meters
- Some users had trouble with the software syncing
- No step-counting function
5. GolfBuddy WTX Smart Golf GPS Watch
The easy-to-use, fast touch interface system of the GolfBuddy WTX Smart Golf GPS Watch makes it simple to get all the information and numbers you need for certain game improvement — accurate yardage measurements, distances to the front, center, and back of the green, and shot distance, to name a few. And a unique feature to GolfBuddy is the dynamic green view. This function actually turns the green view on the watch to match the exact angle of the green you’re looking at, rather than the middle of the fairway like most other GPS watches. Other highlights include over 38,000 pre-loaded courses, accurate distances to doglegs and hazards, activity tracking, interchangeable outer screen, and it’s legal for tournament play.
- Hole layout view with your current position
- Bright, easy-to-read display
- Dynamic green view matches the angle of the green you’re actually looking at
- Users felt the battery didn’t last very long
- On the pricey side