50 Words or Less
The GAME GOLF Live shot tracking system is a solid improvement on the GAME GOLF system. Real time syncing to your phone removes one of the major problems with the original.
Set-Up & Ease of Use
Setting up GAME GOLF Live is similar to setting up the original GAME GOLF. First, charge the device in your computer’s USB port. While it’s charging, download the GAME GOLF app to your phone and set up an account. Once the device is charged, you’ll need to use Bluetooth to pair it with your phone. Finally, screw the tags into the grips on your clubs. You’ll also need to customize your set in the app if your set isn’t GAME GOLF’s standard set-up. This may sound like a headache, but the whole thing takes five minutes, not including the charging.
When you get to the course, turn on your GAME GOLF Live device and open the app on your phone. Use your phone to select the course that you’re playing. While you’re playing, tap the tag on your club to the device before each shot (or after the shot, it doesn’t matter). The device will produce a buzz-beep-buzz when you’ve made a tag.
After the round, all the data should already be synced to your phone. This eliminates one of the major hassles of the original GAME GOLF – needing to plug the device into your computer to transfer the data. Now you can review your round on your phone immediately and save it.
The major upgrade with GAME Golf Live is that the data syncs to your phone immediately after your round. You can review the data immediately and get to work improving your game without going back to your computer.
GAME Golf Live also adds a GPS feature that’s accessible within the app.
Another advantage of GAME Golf Live compared to other shot trackers it the ease of set up. The fact that the tags have the club designation etched into them cuts down the time it takes to get started, and it makes it easy to put back together when take the tags out for any reason. They also give you 18 tags so there’s room to have a unique set up, lose a tag, or swap a couple clubs in and out of the bag.
Finally, and most importantly, GAME Golf Live does a great job displaying the data. The data display that was introduced last year is still there and does allow for digging into very specific elements of your game. What’s better, though, is the new Strokes Gained statistics. In each of four areas – driving, iron play, short game, and putting – you can compare your game to a scratch player, 5 handicap, etc and see how many strokes better or worse you are. This is paired with some suggestions about how to improve your game, and it’s the most potent source of game improvement in the GAME Golf Live arsenal.
Tagging in each shot it still going to be a major hang up for many players. Tagging is far more common – only Arccos has tag-less shot tracker as of this writing – but it’s a definite obstacle to the adoption of shot tracking. On a similar note, the need to have your GAME Golf device on your hip, and have it charged, is another hassle.
Additionally, the app is good but far from perfect. I had significant problems editing one of my rounds and ended up just accepting the errors in the data (UPDATE: GAME Golf claims that a recent update has fixed this issue). I also lost a round at a course with 27 holes because the system misidentified which 18 I was playing. Finally, the Strokes Gained stats are not included on the app, which is something I hope is remedied soon.
GAME GOLF Live retails for $300 (click the link to buy it for closer to $250). This is $100 more than the basic GAME GOLF system, but I think the price difference is well worth it. The real-time syncing to your phone eliminates the need to plug your device into your computer after your round, which makes it much more likely that you’ll actually use this system, and if you don’t use it, it’s not worth anything.
Overall, GAME Golf Live substantially improves on the original and is a worthwhile option for players looking to get into stat tracking. Being able to sync the data to your fun makes the system easier to use, and the addition of Strokes Gained makes the data much more actionable.