Daniel - June 8, 2021
User agents are used for various online activities. In this article, we will answer the question – what is a user agent? – Also, we will show you how best to use them.
Simply put, a user agent is a software that works on your behalf. Such a software will send, receive, and render web content on your behalf. A basic example of this is a web browser.
A web browser is a user agent that makes accessing the internet easier. You enter a web address and it fetches the content of the web page for you. While you’re the one browsing, it’s your browser that’s doing the interaction.
Another example is email software. An email software will help you send and receive messages from others. The internet works as a client-server system. While you as the client browse, the web contents are downloaded from a server. Hence, there are client and server user agents.
Nevertheless, when people reference User Agents, they refer to the User-agent field contained in HTTP headers. This is the primary endpoint for communication between browsers, email software, and other apps and web servers.
Web browsers include the User-agent field in their HTTP header before connecting to any website. Every browser has a unique user agent, so the content is different for different browsers. Notably, the UA content will tell the website what type of browser and device you’re using.