Technology has officially arrived on the golf course. And you’re going to have to get with the times if you want to keep up with the game. Sooner or later, every golfer will be mapping out the course on with a golf GPS, keeping track of his score on his iPhone and sending it to friends or reading the rulebook in an in-depth app. If you don’t have a smartphone or are unable how to figure out how to use yours, you’re part of the past and officially out of luck.
1. Rules of Golf
If the rules of golf have always been a mystery to you, worry no more. This straightforwardly named golf app addresses the most common issues and questions that arise during a round. What if the ball moves accidentally? Rules of Golf has the answer to that, along with an entire section of etiquette and another on the main rules. Selecting one of the rules explains it in detail with clearly written text, diagrams and videos. There’s even a multiple choice quiz to help you memorize the rules.
Available on iOS, Android and Windows Phone
2. Golf GPS & Scorecard from Swing
This golf app makes use of your existing smartphone GPS feature to map out an entire course so you don’t have to walk it. You’ll know exactly where people are on the course, how far away from the green they are, where the sand traps are and what the local wind forecasts are among other things. You can also keep track of your score with a digital scorecard and measure your improvements over the course of several games.
But not only does the GPS act as, well, a GPS. It allows you to analyze your game to the minutest details, from the distance of your shots to their trajectory, which is all meant to give you a better understanding of your individual golfing style. You can also get satellite photos of the course, which you can zoom in and out of to see the green. The app is free, but pay an additional $1 a round or $15 annually to get access to real time wind data, club distance tracking and other fun features.
Available on iOS or Android. Also, if you have a Pebble, Samsung, Gear or Fit smartwatch, you can get more useful info, like distance to the next hole, straight to your wrist.
VPAR works much like the Golf GPS app, but with the added bonus of allowing you to organize and score online tournaments in real time with your friends. And even if you don’t decide to do this, the social media aspect of this app keeps you connected with other golfers by allowing you to send messages within the app and share your progress as you play.
Only for iOS devices and costs $9 yearly after the first two weeks of use.
The most high-tech golf app in a world of high-tech golf apps. It’s got all the features of the VPAR and the Golf GPS, but with the added ability to integrate with Android Wear and Apple Watch smartwatches. You’ll be able to update how many strokes you’re playing per hole, all without taking your phone out of your pocket. Groovy.