GolfBuddy GPS watches have always been solid performers even if their looks were more function over form.
The GolfBuddy WTX GPS watch certainly looks the part a little more than the previous WT5 and despite the relatively large dial it is light to wear.
Like most GPS watches it is a little bulky on the wrist and may struggle to slip under the cuffs of tops or jackets, but the wide rubberised strap is comfortable and easy to adjust.
The WTX is charged using a supplied disc that clips magnetically to the back of the watch and then plugs into the mains or your computer using a standard micro usb cable.
Turn the WTX on and the display shows the time clearly. Click the top right button and you enter the menu for all the other possible modes, after which you use the touchscreen to control the menu.
The WTX is GolfBuddy's first foray into the GPS fitness space and it can track other activities such as cycling, running and walking using a pedometer and of course the best way to reach your daily step goal is go out and play golf!
It can also pair with the free GolfBuddy app to enable course and software updates and also notifications of messages on the screen of the watch.
Here is where the larger screen size of the WTX comes in as it can show the text of the message rather than just the notification that you have one and then you have to get the phone out to see what it was.
On some of the notifications the logos and text were cut off around the edges by the circular bezel of the screen as the message seems to be displayed on what is a square screen underneath.
If you miss the notification you have to go to Settings > Notify to see it which could be simpler.
As it is, the bottom section of the circular screen is hidden on every screen anyway, as you can see when you switch to the rather stylish analogue clock face and you can't see numbers 5, 6 or 7.
However I did not find this to be an issue when it comes to displaying golf course information on the courses I played. After clicking the golfer icon to start the golf mode, the WTX found the course I was playing in about 30 seconds, which is about average.
There are 38,000 courses on the database and each hole has information displayed for front middle and back green distances on the colour display in clear numbers.
These yardages are dynamic and adjust to reflect the angle at which you are hitting into the green, which is good to see.
The display cuts out to save power after a defined period of up to 15 seconds that can be changed in the settings. You can bring it back to life by clicking the button or using the 'Wake Up Gesture' of looking at your watch.
It works pretty well once you get used to where your hand has to be to activate it and that is just a normal 'what's the time' motion.
It takes a couple of seconds for this all to happen, which does not sound much, but compared to an 'always on' GPS display it got a little annoying if you are trying to have a quick glance.
Swipe right on the screen and you get a full hole map with hazards and distances to 100, 150 and 200 yard lay up points lines. This is nice to have if you like these distance points, but the graphic is really not large enough to make an accurate judgement of distances to any of the hazards.
There is a hazard information screen that shows information to the hazards on the hole, but as usual you have to try and match the words to the actual hazards in the real world, which is always the issue with these types of hazard information systems on a small screen GPS device.
There is no scoring function which is a little bit of a surprise, but given there is no stats analysis on the app it is probably not a function that is going to be missed.
On the plus side the GolfBuddy WTX is a light, large display smart watch that provides good yardage information with a colour touchscreen to add a bit of technical glitter.
The screen is clear in all lights and the touchscreen is above average, but it could be quicker with navigation and can be prone to accidental touching.
It would be nice to disable the auto power off completely so the display is always on and it should be time up for whoever is in charge of bezel design for not spotting that it hides sections of the screen.
The pairing with the smartphone for updates is a good step forward, but it could maybe offer a little more golf stats or information via on the app to justify the higher price. You do get the feeling that the GolfBuddy WTX is the first step in their smartwatch journey, so things should only get better, but there are already many other GPS watches that are further down the road doing more for less.