How to Lock Your iPhone or iPad Screen with Portrait Orientation

What is portrait orientation? On iPhone, when you tilt your device on its side, the screen follow. Turning on portrait orientation locks the screen so that no matter which way your iPhone is turned, the screen will stay in place. Instead of your iPhone screen flipping between portrait and landscape view, you can use portrait orientation lock. We’ll cover how to lock your iPhone screen and how to use a small workaround to lock rotation on iPad as well. Here’s how to lock your iPhone or iPad screen with portrait orientation.

Related: How to Use (& Turn Off) Split Screen on iPhone 6 & 6s Plus

Table of Contents:

How to Lock Your iPhone or iPad Pro Screen

How to Lock Rotation on iPad (Air or earlier)

How to Turn on Portrait Orientation Lock on Your iPhone & iPad Pro

You can lock the screen orientation on your iPhone or later model of iPad quickly and easily in Control Center. If you have an iPad Pro, iPad Mini 4, or iPad Air 2, you will be able to lock your iPad screen using portrait orientation in Control Center just like you do on iPhone. To do this:

  • Swipe up from the bottom of your screen to open Control Center.

  • Tap on the Portrait Orientation Lock icon.

Your device's orientation will now stay locked in portrait mode until you turn Portrait Orientation Lock off. There is no option for locking your iPhone screen in landscape mode.

How to Turn on Lock Rotation on Your iPad (Air or earlier)

If you have an older version on iPad, you can lock your screen on iPad using the side switch. This works for iPad Mini 1/2/3, iPad Air, iPad 2, iPad (3rd generation), and iPad (4th generation). When you have one of those models of iPad, you can set the side switch to lock and unlock your iPad's screen orientation in Settings or you can use Control Center. To do this:

  • Set up the side switch to lock your screen orientation. You can do this by opening Settings.

  • Tap General.

  • Select Lock Rotation under Use Side Switch To...

You can now use the side switch to lock your iPad in portrait or landscape mode.

If you prefer to use the side switch as a mute button, you can lock your iPad's screen orientation by holding the iPad in either landscape or portrait orientation, swiping up to open Control Center, and tapping on the Orientation Lock icon.

Newer models of iPad have no side switch; so if you have the latest model of iPad, Control Center is the only place to lock the screen orientation.


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Sarah Kingsbury is the Senior Web Editor of iPhone Life magazine. Previously she wrote for and was the Associate Editor of the Iowa Source for many years.