Garmin Approach S20
Among all the watches the Garmin has manufactured, the Garmin Approach S20 is the most basic golf watch which is a real delight for golfers particularly. Watches nowadays are far from what they used to be and their function is extended far beyond telling the time. Modern watches integrate complex measurement functions, such as measuring the speed, the distance, the pulse, and much other basic information through the GPS integrated function, to heart rate monitoring and health status data readings.
Garmin could be the main ‘culprit’ for the tremendous development of the wristwatches, as the company was the herald of the innovative ideas developed in their watches. Watches are not the only area of interest that the company is focused, it is one of the largest manufacturers of wearable technology and navigation systems for aviation, marine, sports, and outdoor markets. Most of their technologies that were previously used for cars and other outdoor systems are now successfully integrated into their watches, making the Garmin watches one of the most sports-enhanced wearables.
The company releases different types of models so that everyone finds his/her own preference into the watch, as they offer multiple sports functions, to a few selected sports functions. Plus, all of the watches can be paired with a smartphone, however, the level of the smart functions is not the same in all of the watches, so, again, you need to find what matches your preferences. Regarding the Garmin Approach S20, it is an entry-level golf watch, but throughout this review that entry-level for Garmin is neither that basic nor that simple, so you will have the chance to read an in-depth analysis what this watch is capable of doing.
Pin for later
Entry-level golf watch with basic smart features
It counts steps, distance, burnt calories, and monitors your sleep
It can synchronize with the smartphone via Bluetooth or ANT+ for smart notification
It allows automatic uploads to Garmin Connect and lives social media sharing
Garmin Trueup ™ allows you to synchronize your watch with the data from another watch
Compatible with IOS and Android supported phones
Garmin Autoshot feature analyzes your performance and saves your data
GarminTrueswing analyzes your swing through 3D metrics
The screen is not in color
It is mainly golf watch lacking multisport features
Since the Approach S20 is a golf watch which means there maps that you need to follow on it, it is understandable that the display needs to be larger for following the data provided on the screen. The rectangular shape of the screen with rounded edges will probably take up much of your wrist area as the dimensions are 0.9” x 0.9” but it is fairly lightweight so you’ll quickly forget that you are wearing it. The screen is sunlight readable, very bright and crisp, however, it isn’t a color screen. It comes in black and white color and the rubber strap is perforated all along, allows the skin to breathe normally, it is easily adjustable and comfortable to wear. This is exactly what golfers need since spending four to six hours on the course requires wearing comfortable clothes and accessories which aren’t going to distract your attention.
Unlike the modern tendency of offering touch screen watches, the Approach S20 is not such a model, so the navigation through the settings and modes is carried out through the buttons positioned on the left and right of the display. However, it is very easy to navigate as you get the instructions on-screen and the basic functions are provided on the bezels next to each button.
Activity Tracking Features
As it calculates the steps it calculates the distance that you have walked. It also monitors your sleep patterns such as the total sleep and the periods of restful sleep and movement. The watch comes with the Trueup ™ feature included which means in case you have another Garmin device you can synchronize both of the devices to display the data of your activity through the use of the Garmin smart app.
As you hit the ball, the automatic shot distance function calculates the precise yardage for shots from any point on the course and it provides you with stat trackings such as strokes, greens and fairways hits and putts per round. It also has the capacity to detect course and hazard targets and it provides a green view with manual pin positioning.
The Garmin Approach S20 is compatible with the proprietary Truswing ™ app which allows golfers to analyze parts of their swing features by using 3D swing metrics. When you pair your watch with the Garmin smart app you need to select the club you’ll be using and take a shot. The 3D animation will be presented on your phone with all the details about the swing, such as the swing speed and the speed of the clubhead at impact which determines the distance of your shot, the swing tempo, the face angle at impact, the club path, shaft lean angle, dynamic loft at your stroke, the shaft angle at address, and the complete performance.
The Garmin Autoshot feature on your watch helps you to collect and review data of all your shots from each round you play. To use this feature you also need to use the Garmin App on your phone and pair it with the watch. This feature allows you to measure the distance of each individual shot, plus the auto shot map allows you to see the location of each shot. Plus, you can compare your shots from previous rounds and analyze your tendencies. The Autoshot feature can save and upload each of your rounds by confirming this feature prior to your game. With this feature, you also have the possibility to turn on the club tracking option before you tee off. This feature is useful to analyze the speed of each of your clubs and the tendency of your performance. This is a very useful feature and can literally instruct you and help you better your performance.
Having said this, if you are choosing the Approach S20 mainly for its smart function then we afraid it will fail even your basic expectations. This is a golf watch and even the smart functions are more or less golf-related. This means that Garmin Connect will be your gate to the performance tracking as all the data is synchronized through this application. We have already talked about the features that you could use through the Garmin Connect app and how these features can help you improve your performance. You can also create your personal training calendar that can be synchronized too to remind you of your planned activities sessions.
There are two ways to connect your watch to your smartphone, through Bluetooth and ANT+. The Bluetooth synchronization is a very quick and convenient way to get connected to the Garmin app and also you can transfer and save everything related to your performance for further analysis.
The charging time is relatively short and it is carried out through a GPS cable and a clip, so even if the battery drains quickly, the charging is not a complicated thing to do.
- Entry-level golf watch with basic smart features
- It counts steps, distance, burnt calories, and monitors your sleep