November 25

Five of the Best Golf GPS Apps to Help Improve Your Game


GolferScore believes the best first step to lowering your scores is to have accurate distance measurements for every shot. Let’s face it, you can take a WAG (wild ass guess) at it, but you’d be surprised at how inaccurate your own distance judgment really is. Don’t make the game harder than it has to be. We’ve put together a three-part series covering golf laser rangefinders, GPS golf watches, and golf GPS apps to help you decide which device is right for you.

When it comes to golf GPS apps there are several things to consider. Every app has its own unique features; some may be more than you need as a high handicapper but will become valuable as your game progresses. Every app covered here comes with a free version to get you started. Most apps also have paid versions that layer on in-depth distance information, shot tracking, and various virtual caddie features such as club recommendations. Check out the GolferScore reviews below and find the right golf GPS app for your game.

Golfshot Golf GPS


  • 45,000 courses worldwide  
  • Ability to pinpoint actual hole location
  • Handicap Index tracking option
  • Pairs with Apple Watch
  • Feature-rich 


  • Free version only provides distance to center of green  


Like most golf GPS apps, Golfshot’s free version will only provide your distance to the center of the green. If you’re looking for more accuracy, you’ll have to upgrade to the Pro version. Pro offers real-time distances to hazards, key layups and allows for placement of a specific hole location on the green. The app is feature-rich and gives golfers a variety of in-app purchases for game improvement. Upgrades include Pro Caddie, which gives distances to any point on a hole the golfer desires, course management and club suggestions, along with various games like Skins and Nassau or Match Play.

The Grint Golf GPS


  • Full course GPS distance and target measuring for free  
  • Full suite of stats
  • Upload scorecard pictures
  • Great customer support


  • Some users complain of difficulty with Apple Watch compatibility   


The Grint provides golfers a full complement of features for free. We especially like that they allow distance measuring to any point on a hole without forcing golfers to upgrade. You can also track stats and scoring in-depth without upgrading as well. They have a Ryder Cup Format for friendly competitions along with Stableford, Skins, and others. The Grint has also transitioned to the new WGH handicapping format, unlike other apps that may lag behind. Stepping up to a Pro membership will get you advanced stat tracking and Scorecard Picture Service, which lets you upload a scorecard photo to be transcribed hole by hole for you.

18Birdies Golf GPS


  • Large menu of free features  
  • Find distance from anywhere on the course
  • 9 games offered 
  • Monthly DreamGames prize & trip giveaways 


  • Premium upgrade is a bit pricey at $99/year  


There’s a lot to like about 18Birdies when it comes to free features. 18Birdies golf GPS app offers distances from anywhere on the course for starters. You can track stats and your historical rounds forever. 18Birdies seems to offer the largest selection of games with nine to choose from. We especially like that they include Wolf amongst their offerings. Like the others, they offer a premium upgrade that will layer on advanced stats, strokes gained, Caddy+, and a blind shot compass. Our favorite feature is the AI shot tracking. Golfers will receive a snapshot of their shots based on quality, power, shot shape, and distance.  

SwingU Golf GPS


  • Full distance measuring capability for free  
  • Free handicap calculation 
  • Apple Watch integration
  • Robust premium upgrade options


  • Apple Watch pairing can spotty at times  


SwingU golf GPS is another excellent choice and worthy of serious consideration. SwingU provides distances to the green and all obstacles on the course as part of their free version. Their digital scorecard allows easy scoring and putt tracking and automatically advances from hole-to-hole. We like that SwingU will calculate your handicap after posting three rounds too, and it’s free! This won’t be an official WGH handicap, but at least you’re able to establish a baseline for reference. This app will pair up with your Apple Watch and allows you to keep score for your foursome.

An upgrade to SwingU Premium will get you a virtual caddie powered by AI and strokes gained analysis. One of the best features of Premium is the SwingU Versus feature. Versus will let you know how your game stacks up against a tour pro, scratch golfer, or a target handicap of your choice. It also tracks every facet of the game (drives, approach shots, bunker play, short game, and putting) and assigns a virtual handicap to each aspect for further analysis, instruction, and drills.

GolfLogix Golf GPS


  • 3D color course maps  
  • Accuracy to the centimeter on greens
  • 20 years experience
  • Tournament Mode for compliance


  • Some users complain about the accuracy of green mapping and contours  


GolfLogix has been around for over twenty years and is considered a pioneer in the golf GPS app world. GolfLogix is the only app providing distance accuracy on greens down to the centimeter! The ability to read contours and breaks on a green is priceless. They even show you the Putt Line and present you with an aiming point based on hole location. Of course, golfers can still measure distances around the course and track stats like all those other features found in competitor's apps, but GolfLogix owns the best technology on the greens. We like that they have a Tournament Mode, which will keep you legal during competition. When selected, Tournament Mode will comply with the latest rules of golf, essentially allowing detailed maps of the greens without the Putt Line feature.


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