The Browser User Agent is a unique browser identity that tells web servers what type of browser the user is using. Depending on the user-agent, the web server can decide to build web pages using different formatting (mobile vs. desktop) or information (OS-specific pages).
However, the user agent can also be changed right from inside the browser to “trick” the web server into providing information in a specific way. This is very useful for developers to test their sites, to see how their website looks on different browsers and devices.
In this tutorial, we are going to show you how you can change user agent in major browsers.
Change the User Agent in Chrome
Click on the main Menu, located at the top right corner of the screen and from the drop down menu, hover your mouse cursor over “Tools” option. Now from the side menu, click on “Developer Tools”.
After a short delay developer tools will open up. Click on the “Show Drawer” icon located on the left side of the “Gear” icon.
From the new options, click on “Emulation” tab. If you don’t see any options inside it, then click on the “Mobile phone” icon to enable emulation and the options will show up.
Here, click on “Network” located in the left panel and you will see the option of “Spoof User Agent” with a drop down menu below it. Just click on the drop down menu and select your user agent. To apply the user agent you will have to refresh the page using the refresh button located at the top left corner of the window.
The effects will be applied and you can close the developer tools to view properly. When you will again refresh the page, the effects will be removed and you will see your normal view.
Change The User Agent in Firefox
Firefox doesn’t really makes it that easy to switch user agents. This is why, it is better to just use a dedicated add-on that will do the hard work for you. For this purpose, User Agent Overrider is definitely the perfect add-on.
It is extremely simple to use and all you have to do is refresh the page to see the result. Download Overrider and you will see its icon on the right side of the address bar along with a drop down menu button (downward arrow) next to it.
Click on the drop down menu button and you will see all the user agents that you can use. Just click on the user agent which you would like to use and make sure the Overrider icon is “blue” (enabled) not “grey” (disabled).
Now, all your browsing will be done through the selected user agent. You can change user agents while browsing and just by moving from one page to another or refreshing the page will apply the new user agent.
When you are done, just click on the Overrider icon and it will turn “gray”, indicating that the add-on is now disabled. Your browser will change back to normal when you will refresh.
Change The User Agent in Safari
In Safari, click on the main menu (gear icon) located at the top right corner of the window and select “Preferences” from the menu.
In “Preferences”, move to the “Advanced” tab and check the checkbox next to the option “Show develop menu in menu bar” and close the “Preferences” window.
Now, click on “Current page menu” (located on the left of Main menu) and hover your mouse cursor over “Develop” option. From the side menu, hover your mouse cursor over “User Agent” and you will see all the available user agents.
Just select any user agent you like and it will be automatically applied (no need to refresh page). To switch back to default user agent, go to the same “User Agent” menu and select “Default” located at the top of the menu.
If there are any questions or you would like add any further information, let us know in the comments below.
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