Bing Ads, Microsoft's search ads unit, has announced it plans to retire "explicit mobile device targeting", with all ads run through the system now appearing on desktop computers, smartphones and tablets.
The changes will come into effect in March 2015. From then onwards, advertisers using Bing Ads will no longer be able to choose between 'smartphones' and 'desktop and tablet' when setting targeting options.
Instead, users will be able to adjust bid modifiers to change how frequently ads appear across different devices, but will not be able to entirely remove a device type.
The change follows on from Bing's move of grouping desktop and tablet together, which has been successfully rolled out across the ad ecosystem.
"Starting in March of 2015, campaigns that do not target mobile devices should still be prepared to receive mobile traffic, as all campaigns in Bing Ads will be transitioned at that time to support all devices," said Gyan Trivedi, senior program manager for Bing Ads applications and developer platform. "Similarly, if you have campaigns that target only mobile devices, you should be prepared to start receiving traffic from visitors on PCs and tablets in March of 2015 if no change is made."
Along with the change in targeting, Bing Ads will also be rolling out a new ad extension aimed at encouraging browsers to discover and install apps. App extensions will enable advertisers to promote their app for download on Android, iOS and Windows Phone devices, with the extensions automatically targeted to consumers' OS and device combination.