Google Retires Feature-Phone Googlebot & Feature Phone Tools in Search Console!

Google has announced tat they have removed feature-phone user-agents for crawling for search and crawl error reports from Search Console. “Most websites don't provide feature-phone-compatible content in WAP/WML any more. Given these developments, we've made changes in how we crawl feature-phone content (note: these changes don't affect smartphone content).”

Sites which provide content for feature-phones through dynamic serving, based on user agent of the user, should ensure their desktop and smartphone pages have a self referential alternate URL link for handheld devices.

<link rel="alternate" media="handheld" href="[current page URL]" />

“This is a change from our previous guidance of only using the "vary: user-agent" HTTP header. We've updated our documentation on making feature-phone pages accordingly. We hope adding this link element is possible on your side, and thank you for your help in this regard. We'll continue to show feature-phone URLs in search when we can recognize them, and when they're appropriate for users.”

“Without the feature-phone Googlebot, special sitemaps extensions for feature-phone, the Fetch as Google feature-phone options, and feature-phone crawl errors are no longer needed. We continue to support sitemaps and other sitemaps extensions (such as for videos or Google News), as well as the other Fetch as Google options in Search Console.”