There was a time when the surest way to make enemies on a golf course was to pull out a mobile phone. You could hear the groans from the club house as the chatters were presumed guilty of slow play, noisiness and the reason everyone in the foursome didn’t play their handicap.
These days, golfers are hitting the links with smartphones in hand to track scores, navigate courses, mark yardage and, yes, even order a snack at the turn. Apps like Swing by Swing, WebCaddy GPS Rangefinder and Golf Frontier use built-in GPS to help golfers determine distances as well as hazards on thousands of golf courses.
Many of these apps also provide swing analysis, chipping and putting tips, and access to communities of golfers to share course experiences. Scorecard apps let you send copies of the scorecard to everyone in the foursome at the end of the round. And, because GPS apps can sometimes wreak havoc with battery life, apps like GolfLogix provide a battery saving mode so you can play all 18 holes worry-free. Of course, having a phone like the DROID RAZR MAXX HD by Motorola is another option since the phone has up to 32 hours of battery life.
For those who put their sticks away during the winter, there are a number of apps to help you get in shape long before you and your buddies place that first friendly wager on the season’s opening round.
GolfSense, a lightweight sensor that attaches to a golf glove and syncs with a free mobile app over Bluetooth, helps you perfect your swing. Compatible with iOS and Android smartphones, the GolfSense app gives golfers a 360 degree view of their swings for analysis and offers recommendations for improvement. Even the USGA has an app - the United States Golf Association’s Rules of Golf app - to help golfers at all levels brush up on the rules.
So, the next time you see someone on the golf course with a smartphone, ask him or her, what’s their favorite app?