Perhaps I have been living in the wilderness of the apparel world while the technology of the game has been developing around me. But TRENDYGOLF was given the chance to test the latest software to hit the game, along with our brand partners Cobra Puma Golf who have been integrating some of this technology within their latest offering of Cobra drivers.
I was given the lowdown before I left the office: the product attaches to your clubs and feeds back data to your device to then analyse your strengths and weaknesses. Basically, it gives you an overview of the areas of the game where you can improve.
I must admit, beforehand, I felt as though I knew my whole game was a weakness and was dubious that this was actually going to float my boat.
But a sunny day playing golf around the Goodwood estate couldn’t be turned down.
We arrived at the Downs course looking forward to a bacon sandwich and a friendly game, which soon started to turn into intrigue and anticipation when we met Andrew from ARCCOS.
Opening up a brand new set of the ARCCOS attachments, I proceeded to screw these into the top of each of my clubs as instructed, then downloaded the latest ARCCOS app and was given a briefing of what I needed to do in choosing the golf course and using the camera to pair my clubs up with my phone. It was all pretty straightforward.
Ambling down to the first tee I volunteered to hit first wanting to put the system through its paces. My phone was telling me 175 yards was the number, but wanting to test the validity of the information I was given, I pulled out the range finder to measure it at 190 yards.
The pin was at the back of the green, so fair enough, it was approximately 15 yards from the middle of the green where the ARCCOS system’s GPS is measured to.
A seven iron with a strong wind behind should be the club, although a heavy contact meant I just made the front of the green.
Thoughts turned away from everyone else and what they were doing and where they were hitting, it was straight to my phone to see what it was telling me. It had picked up that I had chosen my seven iron. So far, so good.
I walked to my ball, which had crept onto the front edge where my second shot was going to be nothing else other than the putter from all of about 100 feet away. The putter attachment has to be enabled using Bluetooth technology due to the enhanced technology required for delicate shots, so I was interested to see how effective this was going to be. Two decent putts later and I walked off the green with a three and feeling smug that my first hole using the system was a regulation par.
We walked to the next hole analysing the data. I had hit it 157 yards off the tee, then 97 feet and a five-footer in the hole for a par. Apparently the match was all square but that was secondary to being pulled into a game on my phone where I was the player.
As the round progressed, the numbers were totting up. Not only my shot count, but also on the app. Left, right, short, long, middle of the fairway or in the quagmire, it was recording my every move. It was like watching myself on the shot tracker used by the PGA Tour, making me try harder to not mess up or pick up as I knew that the stats were going to be imprinted in the system, no matter how good or bad they were.
After a very friendly one up victory over our friends at Cobra Puma Golf in some testing conditions, we retired back to the Kennels clubhouse for a beer and a look back at the days play on the ARCCOS app.
The hole-by-hole play and scoring was just the tip of the iceberg. I could feel my inner golf nerd coming out as we delved into club distances, dispersion on each club, proximity to the hole, greens in regulation, fairways hit, number of putts. etc etc.
I wanted to get back out there and improve on what I had just done. It had given me a feeling of wanting to improve and to beat myself the next time round.
That wasn’t the ‘pièce de résistance’ either. I was informed that the system builds your personal profile with he more rounds you play to give you an even more rounded overview of your game. After five rounds, it has built up enough information to give you a complete picture so that the ARCCOS caddy can be enabled.
This allows you to download the course and with the help of data from the met office on that day to give you wind direction and general weather conditions, it will recommend how you play the course based on your strengths, weaknesses and club distances.
In short, I arrived a sceptic but left wanting more. Has it improved my game? Probably not, as I don’t devote myself to getting better but I can see the potential to improve my game by giving myself the best understanding of what I do well and what needs work. Those hard facts can only be a benefit.
I can also use the social feature to look at what my friends are doing in real time and send them some words of encouragement if required!
The ARCCOS system retails at £249 and can be purchased at https://trendygolf.com/arccos
Special thanks go to Andrew Turner at ARCCOS for allowing us to test the system, Stuart Gillett at Goodwood for the use of the golf course and Brian Martin from Puma Cobra Golf for the beer afterwards.