We have written before about different ways that your iPhone can be locked, and one of the options discussed involves the orientation of your screen. Your screen can rotate into portrait mode or landscape mode depending on how you are holding it.
I find that I often enable portrait orientation lock if I am lying down and want to read something on my iPhone, but the screen keeps rotating as I move my iPhone. This can be annoying, so having the ability to lock the iPhone into portrait mode makes it easier to use.
But the portrait orientation lock can be a problem at times, so you may find that you need to disable it. However, if you did not enable it yourself, or it was somehow enabled by accident, then you may be having trouble locating the setting. Our guide below will show you how to open the Control Center and disable the portrait orientation lock on your iPhone.
The steps below were performed on an iPhone using the iOS 14.3 operating system. These steps will work for other iPhone models using iOS 11 or higher. We also discuss steps for earlier models of iOS. Note that some apps will remain locked in portrait orientation, regardless of whether or not portrait orientation lock is enabled or disabled.
How to Turn On or Turn Off Portrait Orientation Lock on an iPhone 6
- Swipe up from the bottom of the screen.
- Tap the lock icon.
These steps will work for the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6S, iPhone 6S Plus and most other iPhone models with a Home button. For models without a Home button you will swipe down from the upper right corner instead.
Our article continues below with additional information on how to disable the iPhone 6 portrait orientation lock, including pictures of these steps.
Newer iOS Versions – How to Find the Portrait Lock Button on an iPhone 6 (Guide with Pictures)
The steps in this article were performed on an iPhone using the iOS 14 operating system. If you are using an older version of iOS and the Control Center looks different, then continue to the next section.
Step 1: Swipe up from the bottom of the Home screen.
On newer iPhone models without a Home button you will swipe down from the top right corner of the Home screen instead.
Step 2: Tap the Portrait Orientation Lock button.
You will use this same button regardless of whether you are enabling or disabling the orientation lock option. I have it enabled in the picture below.
The next section shows how this looks on older versions of iOS.
Older iOS Versions – How to Turn Off iPhone 6 Portrait Lock
In older versions of the iOS operating system the Control Center button layout was different. The pictures below show you how to lock or unlock portrait orientation on those older versions of the software.
Step 1: Swipe up from the bottom of your iPhone screen.
Step 2: Tap the circular lock icon at the top-right corner of this gray menu. Portrait orientation lock is turned off when that button is gray. It is turned off in the picture below.
As mentioned earlier, you can tell that the portrait orientation lock is enabled when you see a lock icon in the status bar at the top of your screen. There are a number of other icons that can appear in that location as well, including a small arrow. Learn more about that little arrow icon on your iPhone and see where to determine which app is causing it to appear.
You may also have difficulty switching between landscape mode and portrait mode depending on your Display Zoom setting. We will discuss changing that below.
How to Change the Display Zoom Setting on an iPhone
Your iPhone has two different display zoom settings. One is called Standard, and one is called Zoom.
Step 1: Open the Settings app.
Step 2: Choose the Display & Brightness option.
Step 3: Select the Display Zoom option.
Step 4: Choose the desired type of display zoom.
Step 5: Tap Set at the top right corner of the screen.
Note that you may need to restart your iPhone for this setting to update.
More Information on iPhone Orientation Lock
This guide shows you how to lock your iPhone into the portrait orientation. That means that any app where your iPhone would automatically rotate to the landscape orientation if you turned the device will remain in the portrait orientation.
Effectively this button will lock screen rotation on the iPhone. While it’s useful for situations where the device is rotating and you don’t want it to, it can be problematic later if you forget about it. Fortunately you can unlock screen rotation by simply returning to the Control Center and pressing the same button.
Locking the screen rotation is different from locking the screen. You can manually lock your iPhone screen at any time by pressing the Power button. If you would like to change the amount of time that the iPhone screen waits before it locks itself automatically then you can go to Settings > Display & Brightness > Auto-Lock > then select a time.
Some apps will be locked into a particular screen orientation regardless of whether or not you have enabled portrait orientation lock. This is common with certain types of games.
You can customize the different icons that appear on your Control Center by going to Settings > Control Center. There you will be able to add or remove various controls, as well as reposition them. You can move an icon by tapping and holding the three lines to the right of it.
You can rotate the screen on your iPhone when the orientation isn’t locked by physically rotating the device. Provided that the current app supports both landscape mode and portrait, the iPhone’s screen content should rotate accordingly.
Matthew Burleigh has been writing tech tutorials since 2008. His writing has appeared on dozens of different websites and been read over 50 million times.
After receiving his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Computer Science he spent several years working in IT management for small businesses. However, he now works full time writing content online and creating websites.
His main writing topics include iPhones, Microsoft Office, Google Apps, Android, and Photoshop, but he has also written about many other tech topics as well.
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