The golf GPS app market is enormous and with so many different options out there, it can make choosing one difficult. There are many apps out there that will cost you a pretty penny, but there are also several great apps out there that won’t cost you a dime!
Choosing which app to get can be frustrating as there are just too many choices. Here you will find which ones are worth downloading for FREE.
- Ease of use – did the golf app work quickly and not waste precious time in between shots?
- Key yardages – which apps gave you the most yardage information (many of them withheld it for premium upcharges)
- Overall features – which app gave you the best mixture of features for no charge, and which ones were holding back to get you to open up your wallet
Here is a list of recommended free golf GPS apps:
Overall Pick – The Grint
This is the best-designed free golf GPS app out there for smartphones.
They have done an excellent job at making an intuitive design that works quickly on the course, displays important yardage information, and boasts more features for free than any of their competition.
You are displayed key information like the front, center, and back distances to greens. Additionally, layup distances and yardages to hazards are included (which most of the other apps charge for).
Players can easily adjust distances to figure out layup distances and yardages to hazards. You can also keep track of your stats, play games like Stableford against your playing partners, and enter your group scores easily during the round.
Their strongest feature is that they offer a USGA compliant handicap for free.
There is also a social element to the Grint and their online interface is nicely designed.
Runner Up – 18 Birdies
18 Birdies is another noteworthy free golf GPS app that golfers should be aware of.
It performs nicely on the course with crisp satellite images. It displays yardages to the front, middle, and back of every green and allowed you to adjust your target while maintaining distance information. The app is nicely designed, and you can also enter scoring and statistical information after each hole easily.
18 Birdies is a bit more than just a GPS app. They’ve tried to create a golfing social network. When you log in your presented with a feed similar to Facebook, and you can create social groups amongst your friends and meet fellow golfers who are sharing their experiences on the course.
Another nice feature of 18 Birdies allows you to create and manage live tournaments. Overall, it’s a great app that obviously had a lot of work put into it as it has more robust features than almost every other golfing app out there.
Also Worth Downloading – Golf Logix
Golf Logix has been around for a long time, and has been a leading free golf GPS app for years.
Golf Logix performs well on the course as a GPS device. Instead of satellite images, they are using graphical representations of the course.
You can easily alter your target and are displayed the yardages to all points on the green. One unique feature is that it can display a grid of your landing zones for different clubs (you need to enter all of your club distances beforehand to get an accurate reading).
Entering your score and stats for each hole was fairly easy to do, but maybe not as intuitive as The Grint or 18 Birdies. Overall, Golf Logix performed very solidly on the course.
Game Golf – GAME GOLF has a free golf GPS app available to users who want a taste of their shot-tracking software. The app allows you to manually track your shots, which allows you to get access to their robust online stat analysis software. Additionally, you are given distances to the front, middle, and back of every green (but can’t manually change your target to see distances to hazards etc).
Golfshot – Golfshot is a popular free golf GPS app, and it has some nice features like a power saving mode that simply shows your distance to the middle of the green. However, they withhold a bunch of information that other apps give away for free, such as distances to the front and back of greens and the ability to change your targets.
It’s a solid app, but ads are more visible during use of the app and would probably be viewed as distracting by many golfers.
GolfNow – This is another popular app from GolfNow, which gives you some nice GPS functionality as well as the ability to book tee times.
The Cons of Using Golf GPS?
Beware, there is also a flip side of having a golf app on your phone, see below before purchasing:
- It can be distracting because you could be receiving calls, text messages, or feel the desire to check social media when you should be focusing on the task at hand…golf!
- Keeping your phone in your pocket during a round can be an actual physical burden. Some smartphones now are enormous, and it’s not exactly optimal to have in your pocket while you swing. That’s the deal breaker for me.
- Constantly taking your phone out and putting it back in your pocket or your golf bag/cart during a round wastes precious time, and it could slow your play down and really prevent you from focusing during your pre-shot routine.
- Almost every golf GPS app will drain the battery on your phone quite heavily.