USGA Effectively Bans iPhone in 2012 Golf Rules Fiasco

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by PARider, Dec 27, 2011.

  1. PARider macrumors newbie

    Sep 4, 2010
    Developers and golfers: The 2012 Rules of Golf issued by the USGA and the R&A (UK) effectively ban the iPhone due its un-deletable weather, compass, and browser apps. Rule 14-3 states that such apps are "in breach of the rules, whether or not they are actually used." The iPhone and other smartphones are commonly used on-course with popular golf rangefinder GPS apps, which also keep stores, graphical stats, etc. The iPhone was previously allowed. You can see more on this fiasco in a new story that includes the background, facts, and an editorial.
  2. Small White Car macrumors G4

    Small White Car

    Aug 29, 2006
    Washington DC
    What makes it a fiasco? Seems reasonable to me.

    I don't golf, but when I go to 'trivia-night' at the bar they frown on people getting out smart phones. Seems to be the same thing for golf now, apparently.
  3. PARider thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 4, 2010
    Why it's a fiasco

    From my perspective it's a fiasco because:
    - Dedicated GPS rangefinder devices such as the Garmin and Callaway handhelds are still permitted. So are laser rangefinders. So golfers still get to use GPS, just not the iPhone.
    - Golfers who can afford to pay a caddie get distance information, club recommendations, and all types of advice. So getting distance from an iPhone isn't an unfair advantage, it's more of an equalizer.
    - The USGA first allowed electronic distance-measuring devices in 2006, and still does, but the 2012 rules single out and discriminate against the iPhone.
    - Golf is trying to update its image and speed play. And you do this by banning the iPhone?
  4. Small White Car macrumors G4

    Small White Car

    Aug 29, 2006
    Washington DC
    Well, that sounds like the solution, then.

    I'm serious about photography so I still own an SLR even though my iPhone can take pictures. Golfers will just have to do the same and own that extra piece of gear if it matters to them.

    I mean, yeah, it's a shame they can't use their iPhone, but if people can use it to cheat the rules then I don't see what choice the rule-makers have.
  5. El3ctronics macrumors 65816

    Mar 30, 2011
    Can someone explain to me how information from these apps could possibly make someone more effective on a golf course!?
  6. Peace macrumors Core


    Apr 1, 2005
    Space--The ONLY Frontier
    Wait. Is the USGA allowing any other smartphone like Androids ?

    Or are they just picking on the iPhone.

    I know. read the article.

    I'm in R&R from the hospital so I didn't' wanna read the article.
  7. Gav2k macrumors G3


    Jul 24, 2009
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0_1 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A405 Safari/7534.48.3)

    They allow access to a huge array of information, wind direction the pitch/slope of the green etc
  8. PARider thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 4, 2010
    How affect Android

    Someone who knows more than I do about the Android OS and phones could answer that. If you cannot completely delete (not just turn off or ignore, but delete from the phone) disallowed apps, such as weather, compass, and browser from an Android OS phone, it's banned too.
  9. AlphaVictor87 macrumors 6502a


    Sep 7, 2011
    Saint Louis, MO
    I could maybe understand other installed apps. But they were saying things about the native weather app on the iPhone in the article.

    now unless i've been using it completely wrong this whole time i can only tell the current temp, the day of the week and the high and low temp of the day along with a small symbol to show what the "general" weather is like outside and a percent chance of rain.

    Nothing that would be cheating in a golf game.

    as for the browser, i could see how someone with a bookmark or something could easily use some online web page to help them out.

    And compass falls under the same category as the weather app. There is no valuable information gained from that...

    "Oh **** he knows he's facing due east!!! CHEATER!!!!"

    In all honesty this is a bit ridiculous but not a fiasco
  10. Tilpots macrumors 601


    Apr 19, 2006
    Carolina Beach, NC
    I agree with the article's author, the rule as it's written does indeed ban smartphone use, but it's likely an unintended consequence. He makes several other good points about weather information at your location is likely much different than the weather info at the nearest reportiing station and the trust issues this creates for the sport driven by honor and integrity.

    It also brings up other dilemmas. Youre allowed to have a phone on the course but you can't use it? What if there's an business emergency or maybe you're coordinating with another group on the course? You forfeit or get penalized strokes? That's silly. What happens if the phone on the 8th hole is broken? How do you get a quick dog at thee turn?!? :eek:

    While I'm glad the USGA is attempting to stay up with the times, I'd rather see an all or nothing stance from them. There's just too much grey area here that could cause problems down the road. How much pine tar can you put on those GPS devices anyway?

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