Editor’s note: Today’s guest blogger is Robert Maretsky, Director of Mobile for GolfNow / Golf Channel. Read how the GolfNow app uses Google Maps APIs to help golfers find the right course and improve their scores.
It can be easier for golfers to get a hole in one than to find the right golf course. That’s what led us to create the GolfNow app
(available for Android), which helps golfers find and make reservations at courses, and improve their games by showing satellite views of courses as they play. The app is a spinoff of our GolfNow website
. The app shows golfers their exact location on the course and the distance between their location and the cup by collecting routing information from a third party and overlaying it on top of Google Maps Satellite view.
We chose the Google Maps APIs
because of the comprehensive coverage, timely updates and easy integration with our Android app. We use Google Maps to provide course details so that golfers can find the course that’s right for them.
When on the course, to help golfers decide how to best play their next shot, we use the APIs to display satellite images from Google Maps and use a phone’s GPS to show golfers where they are on the course.
The Places API
has been particularly useful for helping people search for golf courses based on location. If you know you’re going to have free time when visiting (for example) Universal Studios in Orlando, you can type 'Universal Studios' in the search bar and discover nearby courses. Results display course information, including reviews and star ratings from GolfAdvisor.com
. We use custom layouts in our infowindows to style and display the data from the Places API.
GolfNow website is the largest provider of tee times in the world, with more than 13 million rounds and counting. Now, thanks to apps powered by Google Maps APIs, we’re making it even easier for golfers to get the most out of their favorite sport — helping them find and book tee times, playing golf with accurate GPS information, and reviewing how they did after the round is complete.