This part of the documentation answers common questions about Requests.
Requests automatically decompresses gzip-encoded responses, and does its best to decode response content to unicode when possible.
You can get direct access to the raw response (and even the socket), if needed as well.
Requests allows you to easily override User-Agent strings, along with any other HTTP Header.
Chris Adams gave an excellent summary on Hacker News:
httplib2 is part of why you should use requests: it’s far more respectable as a client but not as well documented and it still takes way too much code for basic operations. I appreciate what httplib2 is trying to do, that there’s a ton of hard low-level annoyances in building a modern HTTP client, but really, just use requests instead. Kenneth Reitz is very motivated and he gets the degree to which simple things should be simple whereas httplib2 feels more like an academic exercise than something people should use to build production systems.
Disclosure: I’m listed in the requests AUTHORS file but can claim credit for, oh, about 0.0001% of the awesomeness.
1. http://code.google.com/p/httplib2/issues/detail?id=96 is a good example: an annoying bug which affect many people, there was a fix available for months, which worked great when I applied it in a fork and pounded a couple TB of data through it, but it took over a year to make it into trunk and even longer to make it onto PyPI where any other project which required ” httplib2” would get the working version.
Yes! Here’s a list of Python platforms that are officially supported: