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Golftraxx GPS for Blackberry - review


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Round #1 with the Golftraxx GPS yesterday, after one test on a course I'd never played before I am happy with the product. The course was on temp. tees due to the early season, which somewhat screwed with the results as some of the targets were not designed for the tee locations. One hole from the men's tee boxes is normally 224 (per the GPS) to a water hazard and ~275 (estimate) to clear it, beyond the reach of most amateurs, thus the carry distance wasn't provided. From yesterday's tee location it was 165 to the water and ~215 to carry the water. (Not all holes were shortened this drastically.)

 

As for the on course use, I found the distances to be accurate, or accurate enough for my skill level. I used the GPS to make club decisions and tried to use good course management versus the hit and hope method that is all too prevalent. It didn't slow me down despite using it on nearly every shot outside of green side chips or putts, this was the first time I'd played this course and needed the guidance. This did bring one issue to light - battery life. As I walked up to my tee ball on 18 the battery was almost dead on the BB, it was nearly fully charged when I started the round. I expect if I didn't have it on close to 90% of the time the battery would have lasted longer.

 

Positives:

  • Basic and accurate GPS for low cost, or free if you invest some time into mapping a course, which I did
     
    Simple interface with the key info - yards to targets/lay-up points/hazards, F/C/B of the green, and tee marker
     
    Great for tracking distances of shots, granted yesterday was not a great day for a yardage assessment with the wind.
     
    Had no issue with signal or getting a yardage reading. Launched the application and had a GPS reading shortly thereafter, never lost the signal during the entire round.

 

Complaints:

  • The SW was designed for the Bold, I have the Storm, thus the navigation is intended for a trackball, not the touch screen. It is a bit clunky here, though the developer is looking to address this.
     
    I could not find a way to back up holes, not that I needed to, but if you advance two holes by mistake you have to reload the application and course then skip through to your original location.
     
    I wish there was a way to partially lock the device so that the only buttons that work are hole advance/back up (if they make a way to back up) and target selection. I usually lock the device when I put it in my pocket to prevent accidental button pushing, to do this meant unlocking the device several times per hole. Not a deal breaker, but a nice to have.

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The course was on temp. tees due to the early season, which somewhat screwed with the results as some of the targets were not designed for the tee locations.

 

I am just curious what you mean by this. By nature a GPS tells you the distance from where you are to the green. If you are standing at the temp tee location it should not make any difference in using the device at all. In fact this is where it should be the most helpful.

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The course was on temp. tees due to the early season, which somewhat screwed with the results as some of the targets were not designed for the tee locations.

 

I am just curious what you mean by this. By nature a GPS tells you the distance from where you are to the green. If you are standing at the temp tee location it should not make any difference in using the device at all. In fact this is where it should be the most helpful.

 

I'll expand on the example I gave originally.

 

One hole is a par 4 with water at ~225-275 off the normal men's tees location, when I mapped the course I did not map the carry distance as I know there are so few people that can clear 275+ off the tee it wasn't worth it. With the tees as far forward as they were the water was now something that could be cleared off the tee, versus a hazard 99.999% of people would lay up short of.

 

Does that make more sense? It is not a fault in the GPS application, but a decision *I* made when mapping this course.

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Solved the issue of being able to move forward/backward holes - I had installed the SW for another version of a BB. I guess the OS is close enough so that the SW installed and had 99% of the functionality, but for that one feature.

 

It is now fixed...and I am ready for warmer weather! :)

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