Does Apple Watch Have Golf GPS?

Brad Carey14 Apr 2022

Recently, the notion of golfing with an apple watch has picked up steam. The popularity of Apple Watches and other smartwatches has skyrocketed in the last two years. Everyone you meet that has an iPhone, more often than not, also owns an Apple Watch.

For accurate yardage, scorekeeping, and other metrics, golfers all over the world were turning to GPS watches. Some of the top golf GPS watches cost between $150 and $500. However, are golf GPS watches still as relevant these days?

Instead of buying a golf watch built exclusively for golf, an increasing number of golfers are instead utilizing their Apple watch for the sport. Apple Watches can now function in the same way as the finest golf GPS watches, thanks to the inclusion of GPS technology integrated right into the device. A Golf GPS App for Apple Watch is all that you need.

Apple Watch Golf GPS vs Garmin

Are you looking for a golf GPS watch but aren't sure if you can use your Apple Watch or get a new Garmin watch?

Many top Garmin watches are created for sports enthusiasts, such as golfers. Garmin watches come in a variety of types that vary substantially in terms of functionality, appearance, and price. In contrast, the current Apple Watch lineup is restricted, but it is suitable for those looking for a well-rounded smartwatch designed exclusively for the so-called Apple system. Thus, if you own several Apple devices, buying an Apple Watch has its advantages.

Apple Watch

The Apple Watch is functional, but its on-course capabilities are heavily restricted. If compared to a  stand-alone device, this would be similar to one of the more basic golf watches on the market. For many golfers, this will do, but if you're seeking a more in-depth experience, the Apple Watch has to be paired with an iPhone. Only then will it be able to compete with a Garmin golf GPS watch. Regardless of the third-party application you choose, the Apple Watch delivers very fairly basic capabilities on the course. It will provide you with yardages to the green as well as your score. Most other capabilities will require you to turn to your iPhone and whichever golf app you have downloaded.


  • Excellent for Apple users
  • There are lots of golf and non-golf applications to pick from
  • The touch interface works seamlessly
  • Can be synchronized with your iPhone to receive all of your calls, messages, and alerts
  • There are band options to suit your style


  • The battery life isn't all that great
  • To work as a golf GPS watch, you must first download and install a golf app
  • Before starting your round, you need to  launch a golf app first
  • Can be expensive

Garmin Watch

Golfing with a Garmin watch is a lot more efficient than with an Apple watch. A phone synchronization is an option, but it's not a compulsory one. All of the information you need can be found on your Garmin watch, and the only time you might need to use your smartphone is to view the course map on a bigger screen.  You'd only need to synchronize with your phone if you want to save and link your score to your Garmin account.


  • Comes with a colored touchscreen display
  • Provides bunker and hazard ranges
  • Pre-installed with 7 watch faces
  • Offers the feature of choosing widget display
  • Even in bright sunshine, it's easy to read
  • Comfortable on the wrist


  • No additional watch faces could be downloaded
  • Some familiarity with the app's functionalities is required
  • Doesn't always accurately measure distances
  • The battery quickly depletes if left on GPS mode

The Best Golf GPS Apps for an Apple Watch

The Apple Watch is among the biggest and most popular wearable technology devices. An excellent golf app is the best way to use your Apple Watch on a golf course. 

Here are some of the best golf GPS apps for an Apple watch:

Arccos Caddie

The Arccos Caddie app synchronizes with Arccos Caddie sensors to automatically track your shots while offering Smart Distance club averages and game insights from the course. Golfers of all skill levels can use the system's A.I.-powered GPS rangefinder and caddy assistance for every hole in the world to enhance their game and shoot lower scores.  Using this application on your Apple Watch is a cinch, and the watch will recognize each shot instantly. Once the yardage is displayed, it will also recommend which club to use for your upcoming shot and show the distance to the green.

Golf GPS SwingU

Each golf course worldwide is compatible with this swing-by-swing golf application. It is possible to determine the distance to the middle of the green as well as any obstructions by using the Golf GPS SwingU app for Apple Watch. You could use satellite images to figure out how far you are from that location. There is also a computerized golf scorecard accessible that moves from hole to hole automatically. Free online round recording, statistics and data, and handicap-adjusted games are just some of the features available to you. Distances, score tracking and shot tracking are all included in the Apple Watch golf GPS app.

Hole19 Golf GPS & Scorecard

Over 43,000 golf courses are included in the Hole19 app's database. This is one of the greatest golf GPS applications for the Apple Watch. Additionally, you could see graphs showing how well you played in the driving, short game, putting, and overall scoring. As a bonus feature, shot tracking shows how far you cruised your last shot.


It's a must-have golf app for tracking stats and challenges, as well as live scoring. Realtime leaderboards and tournaments could be created with the app, which is a fantastic feature that could enrich your weekly roll-up or group and is a perfect alternative to having to deal with and interchange a scorecard. Accurate yardage measurements are displayed on the Apple Watch, as well as the capability to record your score from your watch. You could also keep track of information such as driving accuracy, greens in regulation, and putts to see where you need to make improvements in your game.

Even throughout the workday, you could enjoy a game of golf and get all of your notifications, calendar reminders, messages, and phone calls via the Apple Watch. While the multi-functionality is a wonderful perk, keep in mind that it could also be a drawback. Golf is a sport that requires attention and every second you spend staring at your Apple watch's screen takes you away from the game.

Brad Carey

Brad Carey

An avid golfer, brad loves a round of 18 on a Sunday. After getting involved in the technical side of golf, he thought he'd share his insights with others.

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