Google Introduces New Googlebot User-Agent for More Effective Crawling On Smartphone Content

Google’s New Googlebot User-Agent Effective Crawling on Smartphone Content

Google announced via Google Webmaster Central Blog that the old user-agent “Googlebot-Mobile” mobile-specific crawler will be retired in the next 3 – 4 weeks. “Googlebot-Mobile” user-agents have been tested since 2011 to improve the mobile search experience for feature phone and smartphone users.

According to Zhijian He, Google’s Smartphone Search Engineer, “We’ve seen cases where a webmaster inadvertently blocked smartphone crawling or indexing when they really meant to block just feature phone crawling or indexing.” Over the years, as Google developed new mobile crawlers, the company struggled to index mobile content for feature phones versus smartphones.

So now Google has taken action to give webmasters more control by revealing “Googlebot,” the new user-agent built specifically to crawl content on smartphones. “Googlebot-Mobile” will continue to crawl content for feature phone content.

Google clarified the different mobile user-agents as:

The new Googlebot for smartphones user-agent:
Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 6_0 like Mac OS X)

AppleWebKit/536.26 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/6.0 Mobile/10A5376e

Safari/8536.25 (compatible; Googlebot/2.1;



The Googlebot-Mobile for smartphones user-agent we will be retiring soon:
Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 6_0 like Mac OS X)

AppleWebKit/536.26 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/6.0 Mobile/10A5376e

Safari/8536.25 (compatible; Googlebot-Mobile/2.1;


Regular Googlebot user-agent:
Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; Googlebot/2.1;


The two Googlebot-Mobile user-agents for feature phones:

  • SAMSUNG-SGH-E250/1.0 Profile/MIDP-2.0 Configuration/CLDC-1.1 UP.Browser/ (GUI) MMP/2.0 (compatible; Googlebot-Mobile/2.1; +
  • DoCoMo/2.0 N905i(c100;TB;W24H16) (compatible; Googlebot-Mobile/2.1; +

Google made sure to specify this important implication of the user-agent update, “The new Googlebot for smartphones crawler will follow robots.txt, robots meta tag, and HTTP header directives for Googlebot instead of Googlebot-Mobile.”

Based on a Google internal analysis, the update should affect less than 0.001% of URLs. As the update rolls out webmasters can test sites, He says, “Using the Fetch as Google feature in Webmaster Tools, and they have full access to the full list of existing crawlers in the Help Center.”

0/5 (0 Reviews)

Recent Posts

Perfect WebVitals Score: Making the Myth Come True

Page speed has been the center of discussion for the SEO community lately, with much…

July 27, 2020

What is Core Web Vitals?

Core Web Vitals is a new 2020 metric that has been rolled out and it's…

July 7, 2020

How to Increase Page Speed?

While there are many aspects to speeding up pages, here are four key things to…

June 29, 2020

How and Why to Disavow Toxic Links

It's often said that the most significant factor of how search engines rank sites is…

June 14, 2020

SEO Inc. CEO Featured as a Guest on Thrive Time Podcast

SEO Inc. CEO as a Guest on Thrive Time Podcast. Garry Grant, the founder of…

June 4, 2020

How to Get Your Facebook Ads Delivering

The Facebook advertising platform is robust and can be confusing to the newcomer. If your…

June 2, 2020