Shot Scope G5 Golf GPS Watch
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Shot Scope G5 Golf GPS Watch

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Shot Scope G5 Golf GPS Watch

The new Shot Scope G5 golf GPS watch that comes out today may already lead the field in being the easiest-to-use Golf GPS watch.

And that’s not even its most notable feature.

In fact, it might not even be in the top three.

In only six years, Shot Scope has forced its way into the golf technology conversation, offering value options that stack up against nearly anything Bushnell, Garmin or Arccos offers. And today’s release of the G5 golf GPS watch joins the Shot Scope Pro L2 laser rangefinder as maybe the best values in golf under $150.

Especially if you like a dash of color.

An image of the Shot Scope G5 golf GPS watch.

Shot Scope G5 Golf GPS Watch: Color My World

“We like being in the GPS market,” says Gavin Dear, former European Tour pro and Shot Scope’s chief commercial officer. “We have all our own course maps and we know that we can hit certain price points that are great for a simple GPS watch.”

We’ll get to just how simple the G5 is to use in a moment. And we’ll discuss functionality and the price point, too. But, man, we gotta start by talking about the straps.

“Hey, we like color,” says Dear. “Nobody else in golf technology really likes color but we like color. So why not do a few color straps?”

An image of the color options of the Shot Scope golf GPS watch.

To be precise, there are 12 different colored straps plus your choice between a gray or a black watch body.

When you buy a Shot Scope G5 golf GPS watch (it’s GPS only – no shot tracking), you get the watch itself and your choice of two straps. You can choose from black, white, carbon gray, steel gray, navy blue, sky blue, army green, mint green, burgundy, racing red, orange or pink.

“We found that if you offer just one color strap, people will play it safe and choose black,” says Dear. “We decided to package it with two straps to give the golfer some choice. They can play it safe and get a bit of color.”

Shot Scope’s website allows you to build your package. Once you select a black or gray watch body, you can use a pull-down menu to select your strap colors. The website will actually render the watch/strap combo for you so you can get an idea of what it’ll look like.

And if you really want to accessorize, you can buy as many extra straps as you want at $19.99 a pop.

A close-up image of the Shot Scope G5 golf GPS watch.

Form and Function

The Shot Scope G5 golf GPS watch is a bit wider than an Apple Watch SE. And, at 42 grams, it’s in the same weight ballpark as the SE and just a bit heavier than a Bushnell ION or Garmin Approach S12.

Functionally, it has all the basics you’d expect. You get front-middle-back distances, distances to hazards, doglegs and layups, scorekeeping and 36,000 courses mapped and loaded. Additionally, you can change the size of the F-M-B display and you can even just get the distance to the middle if you want.

“There are loads of golfers who just want to know the distance to the middle,” says Dear. “They’ll tell you their eyesight is going a bit so they just want to see big numbers on the screen.”

An image of the Shot Scope G5 golf GPS watch.

The display in GPS mode is large, bright and easy to read. Middle distance shows in a bright blue with blue and yellow icons for bunkers and water hazards.

At $150 (with no monthly subscription required), you won’t get hole or green views. It does offer three different clock faces if you want to wear it as a watch. While in watch mode, the screen goes dim to save the battery and you’ll have to press one of the function buttons to illuminate it. The battery lasts 10 days in watch mode and is good for two-plus rounds in GPS mode.

Easy Does It

As an advancing Boomer, I’ve learned it’s important to know your limitations when it comes to technology. I have an Apple watch and use maybe 12 percent of its capabilities and can never remember passwords. But even a simpleton like me found the Shot Scope G5 golf GPS watch stupid-simple to use.

a close up of the Shot Scope G5 golf GPS watch.

First off, you don’t need to sync it to your cell phone to use it. You don’t even need a cell phone to use it. You can sync it to your cell phone (it’s recommended for firmware updates, course updates and score uploads) but it’s not necessary.

When you first turn it on, it’ll ask if you want to sync to a phone but it also has a “skip” feature, which will bring you right to “Play Golf.” Within seconds, it found I was getting ready to play Breakfast Hill in Greenland, N.H., and off we went. The G5 moved seamlessly from hole to hole and navigating from F-M-B to hazard and layup distances was kindergarten-level simple. And all the scorekeeping function wanted from me was a number.

“We were at a Roger Dunn’s (golf shop) in Tucson talking with one of the sales associates,” says Dear. “He told us that with technology, he only sells stuff he knows won’t come back. He said guys would come in all the time returning stuff because they couldn’t make the damn thing work.

“With G5, you don’t have to connect to an app. You don’t have to register it or do anything. You can just go play golf.”

Shot Scope G5 Golf GPS Watch: Final Thoughts, Price, Availability

The new Shot Scope G5 golf GPS watch is priced to go head-to-head with the Bushnell ION Edge and Elite and the Garmin Approach S12. When compared to the ION Edge at $149.99, the Shot Scope does have better-looking graphics. Compared to the ION Elite and S12, it lacks hole and green mapping and is a tad heavier. But it is $50 less expensive.

And it has 12 straps’ worth of color.

An image of the gray Shot Scope G5 golf GPS watch.

“For a golfer, having a distance-measuring device is as important as having a 3-wood in the bag now,” says Dear. “We’re rapidly becoming the third brand in the U.S. with Bushnell and Garmin. We offer a breadth of products and we offer pricing differences compared to those companies.”

Shot Scope’s Pro L2 laser rangefinder, which debuted this spring, has been a certified monster. More than 3,000 units landed in North America two weeks ago. Shot Scope has fewer than two dozen left.

“I’ve got another 2,000 units coming in August and they’re already gone,” says Dear. “I think the G5 will be really similar. It should fly.”

With one round under my belt with the G5, I can say it works as advertised. And if there’s an easier-to-use golf GPS watch out there, I haven’t seen it. Swapping straps can be a minor challenge for those cursed with less-than-nimble fingers but it’s nothing that can’t be overcome.

And it’s priced to move.

The Shot Scope G5 golf GPS watch is available starting today. The watch plus two straps sell for $149,99. Additional straps are $19.99 each. You can “build your own” package with your choice of a black or gray watch and your choice of straps at Shotscope.com.

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John Barba

John Barba

John Barba

John is an aging, yet avid golfer, writer, 6-point-something handicapper living back home in New England after a 22-year exile in Minnesota. He loves telling stories, writing about golf and golf travel, and enjoys classic golf equipment. “The only thing a golfer needs is more daylight.” - BenHogan

John Barba

John Barba

John Barba





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      Peejer

      10 months ago

      I was intrigued, but you lost me at ‘no shot tracking’.

      Reply

      derek gzaskow

      10 months ago

      reviews on amazon, dark! for sunlight, the band is on wrong for right handers, ur not suppose to flip it around,

      Reply

      Mike

      10 months ago

      Thought I couldn’t care less about the color of the straps, this does sound really interesting. My home course is a links style so I shoot all my distances with my GPS, but when I play other courses, especially ones that are hilly, this would come in handy

      Reply

      Manny Amatrudo

      10 months ago

      Followed up the v1 version with the V3 and couldn’t be happier with shot scope! I use the watch to keep score and download the round to my phone where it tracks my distances and accuracy. I immediately know where my weakness is and what i need to practice. Went from 82% first putts short to 40% in less than three weeks. I also use the GPS mapping on my phone to brag about driver distance!!

      When I first received V3 I had some isssues getting it set up right. Phone calls and emails to the UK were professional courteous and put me, the customer first. They are a first rate company and a produce a great product.

      Reply

      Matt McElroy

      10 months ago

      If you have the V3 version, will the new version work with the current club markers? Or do you need new tabs?

      Reply

      John Barba

      10 months ago

      Hi Matt – the G5 watch is a GPS-only watch – it doesn’t do shot tracking or stat keeping. It’s as basic and as simple as it comes. The X5 watch, which came our earlier this year, is the new version of the V3 watch.

      Reply

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