The PGA Tour is now bringing the golf course to your home through Apples augmented reality platform. Using Apples ARKit in iOS 11, the PGA Tour has made a new app called PGA Tour AR that lets you compare professional golfers against each other and check out featured golf holes. Youll be able to better visualize players strokes and the angles from which they sank the balls. To use the app, first let your camera sense a surface, and then tap the screen to select a hole. The terrain will materialize and you can select players and rounds to compare shot trails. The app also lets you enter the pro players name and compare them to up to three other pros. You can move your phone closer to see the golf balls and terrain up close, but as soon as you tab out, youll have to go through the setup again. The app currently lets you choose from specific tournaments and holes, such as hole 7 from Pebble Beach Golf Links 2018 or TPC Sawgrass 2017s hole 16. Eventually, the PGA Tour plans to feature at least one hole from each tournament. Tapping into ARKit in iOS 11 allows us to showcase real-time data provided by ShotLink and CDW in a rich, visual way for fans, PGA Tours chief media officer, Rick Anderson, said in a press release. As it is now, the PGA Tour AR app is pretty basic and rudimentary. Youre able to see basic balls and grass on a surface in front of you, but you cant visualize the players actual movements before you. The app doesnt have much functionality after youve seen your favorite tournaments and players. However, the PGA Tour does plan to eventually enable fans at golf tournaments to hold their devices in front of holes and display shot trails live, which could be potentially useful when it rolls out. The app is only available on iOS.
It can display real-time and archival data for up to four players at once, too. Sports and augmented reality (AR) apps are nothing new. The technology has been used by the NFL, NBA and even German soccer teams to promote their respective leagues, with results varying from the gimmicky to the interesting. Now the Professional Golfers' Association (PGA) has its own AR app on iOS that lets you watch real-time shot trails appear on select holes during live competition. You can also compare up to four different players' shots, if that's your thing. PGA Tour AR uses your iPhone camera and iOS 11's ARkit to place a virtual map of six different golf holes onto any flat surface. The app currencly has hole seven from the Pebble Bead Golf Links, hole six at Bay Hill Club and Lodge, TPC Sawgrass' hole 16, 17 and 18 and the 18th hole from the East Lake Golf Club on offer. The data is taken from previous competitors, for now, but you'll be able to watch the real-time competition as it happens starting with the Arnold Palmer Invitational on March 15th. The PGA plans to add more holes as time goes on, and hopes to feature one hole from every tournament on this year's PGA tour. So far, all you can do is place a golf course on your coffee table, which seems kind of limited in appeal. However, an update to the app later this year is set to enable on-course AR, where you can hold up your device in front of any hole to see shot data for selected golfers live or from an archive. Other additions may include AR maps to help you find venues, merchandise stands and concessions, or even for finding specific players on a given course. Of course, there's also potential for displaying branded data for each hole, highlight video clips and 360-degree views of various products.