Garmin Approach G5: Soon To Be Garmin Android App?


Remember GolfPlay? It was an Android application by Inizziativa that was in the Top 50 of the Android Developer Challenge. But alas, there is STILL no GolfPlay on the market. Seeing as how its winter in the United States its a bit less important but there is something to be said for the “first mover advantage” and I’m wondering if Garmin might win that right.

Garmin has just announced a product called the Approach G5 that is described as a GPS-enabled golf handheld. A few key features of the device include:

  • Rugged and waterproof
  • Thousands of preloaded golf course maps
  • High sensitivity GPS receiver
  • Shot distances show exact yardage to pin/fairways/greens/etc…
  • Keep score digitally
  • Instills momentary false excitement in Android fans due to G5 naming convention. G is for Golf… not Google.

And a few pictures of the Approach G5:

Approach G5 has a nice ring to it… probably because it sounds like the type of application we’d like on our Android enabled G1! While T-Mobile’s G1 certainly isn’t rugged or waterproof and the GPS receiver could stand to be a little more accurate, this is the EXACT type of application that would have a field day on the Android Market. Garmin recently joined the Open Handset Alliance and we know they’ll be coming out with an Android device sometime in 2009.

It IS going to be an Android Phone and not an Android Golf GPS… right? I think Garmin will explore every possible distribution channel and we’ll see an Android Phone from Garmin, Garmin App on the Android Market and Garmin Golf App on the Android Market. I wouldn’t be surprised to see hybrids of the Approach G5 and Android hardware in the future either. I mean, why not? Well we all know why not but from a “if you make it some idiot will buy it standpoint” it would probably do okay.

Just to be clear, the Approach G5 HAS ABSOLUTELY NOTHING TO DO WITH ANDROID and the G5 nomenclature is pure coincidence. But it did get our wheels in motion… thinking Garmin meant more than meets the eye about knocking out 2 birdies with one stone.

One more thing… what happened to GolfPlay?

Rob Jackson
I'm an Android and Tech lover, but first and foremost I consider myself a creative thinker and entrepreneurial spirit with a passion for ideas of all sizes. I'm a sports lover who cheers for the Orange (College), Ravens (NFL), (Orioles), and Yankees (long story). I live in Baltimore and wear it on my sleeve, with an Under Armour logo. I also love traveling... where do you want to go?

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  1. I think you’re right. Not only that, but we’ll see Garmin Android devices built for backcountry navigation too.

  2. Eigentlich bin ich ja nicht so der “Blog-Fan” aber nach deinem Artikel

  3. No need to wait for Garmin or GolfPlay because you can download SkyDroid (http://www.skydroid.net) to your Android phone right now for only 99 cents (search for SkyDroid in the Android Market).

    Sure the course list is small right now, but users can map ANY course online using the Course Mapper tool (http://www.skydroid.net/coursemapper.html) and then download it at no cost to the app.

    App gives you distance to Front, Center and Back of every green. Plus distances to features like water hazards and bunkers. Satellite view of the hole, with yardage overlay. Distance to ANY point on the satellite image.

    Ok, I’ll fess up, I’m the developer of SkyDroid. So give it a try and let us know what you think.

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