Google Clarifies GoogleBot’s New Useragent Name Usage
Yesterday we reported that Google said the new name for the GoogleBot useragent is now 100% live. Well, that was wrong, it technically was not 100% live. Martin Splitt from Google broke it down for us explaining that when the web rendering service renders the page, that is using the new user agent name 100% of the time.
Martin Splitt said on Twitter (1) one of the first things Googlebot does is making an HTTP request to fetch the HTML of a page. That’s still done with the old UA. (2) Then WRS renders the page, loading that HTML and fetching the linked resources. All of this is done with the new UA.
Here are those tweets:
Sometimes WRS will fetch the page again as well…it’ll use the new UA, too.
A bunch of services might fetch things themselves too.. They have to specify a UA and may use either of them.
— Martin Splitt at #FOS20 (@g33konaut) February 5, 2020
So it seems like how John Mueller of Google explained it earlier was correct.
Martin Split said he doesn’t think Chrome 41 User Agent name will go away:
I don’t think that’s gonna change, but we’ll see. Either way, don’t worry about seeing 41 in your logs =)
— Martin Splitt at #FOS20 (@g33konaut) February 6, 2020
Why does it matter? Well, it really doesn’t. Unless you hard code user agent detection and end up blocking GoogleBot from crawling your site…
Forum discussion at Twitter.