Published on July 20th, 2013 | by Greg

Swingbyte 2: A Great Golf Tool

The rise of better data-management tools has led to improvements in everyday life- from safer transit systems to better tailored clothing. Whatever you want to call the phenomenon- “the quantified self”- chances are that if you’re an active individual concerned with fitness that you’ve tried out an app or a device like the FuelBand, FitBit, or any of the many others. The same technology makes sense for other sports as well- like golf.

The Swingbyte 2 Golf Swing Analyzer is basically a tracking tool for your golf club, combined with a set of applications that examine, record, and analyze your swings. You can instantly see what you did wrong or right, and over time, learn how to correct the mistakes and improve your game. The company earned a lot of buzz with the initial version of the product, and is continually refining the hardware and software, improving the experience. You simply pair the device with your smartphone or tablet just like any other Bluetooth gadget.

We tested the Swingbyte 2 with a range of drivers and clubs- attachment to various shaft sizes is fairly easy thanks to the unique design, and we didn’t have too much trouble. You will want to make sure that, especially on thinner shafts, you check on the Swingbyte regularly and adjust as necessary. Alignment is crucial for the data to be helpful, so make sure you take a peek often. We largely tested on a driving range rather than at play, and it worked well for both women and men, either left- or right-handed.

The software- freely available apps for the iPad and iPhone as well as Android- looked sharp and fairly easy-to-use. Every swing you take can be saved in the cloud (automatically via your phone, or once you are connected to wi-fi). And you can play them back in a nifty 3D mode, view statistics, and there are even some cute achievements or badges to earn. You can also record video of your swing, though this takes some work to setup. One thing notably missing is a lot of feedback- the data is great, but it can hard to know what to do with it. This is true, of course, of other competitors as well- such as the SwingTIP that we tested out a few months ago which features easier-to-grasp software, but offers less data and hardware that wasn’t quite as solid. The SwingByte 2 looks cool, works well, and has a nifty online analytics platform, all of which can help take your game to the next level. Available now, online and in stores, for around $150.

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About the Author

Greg dreamed up the idea for the Truly Network while living in Hawaii, which began with a single site called TrulyObscure. In 2010, when advertisers and readers were requesting coverage beyond the scope of that site, TrulyNet was launched, reaching a broader audience over a variety of niche sites. Formerly the head technology correspondent for the Des Moines Register at age 16, he has since lived and worked in five states and two countries, helping a list of organizations and companies that includes the United States Census Bureau, TripAdvisor, Events Photo Group, Berlitz, and Computer Geeks. He also served as the Content Strategy Manager for HearPlanet, a multi-platform app that has reached over a million users and has been featured in the New York Times, Hemispheres Magazine, National Geographic Adventure, Fox Business News, PC Magazine, and even Appleā€™s own iPhone ads. Greg has written as a restaurant critic and feature journalist for a number of national and international publications, including City Weekend Magazine, Red Egg Magazine, the Newton Daily News, Capital Change Magazine, and an arm of China Daily, Beijing Weekend. In addition, he has served as a consulting editor for the Foreign Language Press of Beijing, as well as a writer and editor for the George Washington University Hatchet, the school newspaper of his alma mater. Originally from Iowa, Greg is currently living in the West Village of Manhattan.

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