This guide will show you the iPhone stop screen rotating trick when you turn the device on it’s side. On an iPhone the feature that you use to stop the screen rotating is Orientation Lock. Orientation lock has been available on the iPhone for years now. In every major version Apple decide to move the location of the icon. The icon is a padlock with an encompassing circle.

I have documented the changes in the location of the orientation lock over the years. This article now contains instructions for every major version of iOS. It shows the location of the feature over time.

How to stop iPhone rotating screen

In ios11 the portrait orientation lock is now on the dash screen. Here’s how to stop your iPhone screen rotating:

  • swipe up from the bottom of the screen to show the dash screen
  • You will see a lot of controls, including volume, brightness, music controls and others
  • under the icons for WiFi, Bluetooth and airplane mode you will see the padlock icon
  • click the padlock icon to toggle the orientation lock
  • when orientation lock is enabled, the icon will have a white background

To disable the iPhone Orientation lock click the icon again (it will have a transparent background).

I have added an image and a video below to help you.

ios11 screen rotation lock

iPhone stop screen rotating (ios10)

In ios10 the portrait orientation lock button is on the control-center screen.

  1. Swipe from the bottom of your screen upwards to show the control-center
    (opposite from what you do for the notification center at the top of your screen)
  2. You will now see the control center with lots of icons and options.
  3. If you see the music and volume controls, swipe to the screen on the left
  4. By default portrait orientation lock is the last icon in the first row.
  5. If its enabled it will have a red background. if it is disabled, it will have a transparent background

How to stop iPhone screen rotating with Portrait orientation lock in iOS

In ios7 the portrait orientation lock button has moved. It is on the control-center screen. This is the same for iOS 8 and iOS9.

To access the control-center:

  1. Swipe from the bottom of your screen upwards to show the control center
    (like you do for the notification center at the top of your screen)
  2. You will now see the control center with lots of icons and options.
  3. By default portrait orientation lock is the last icon in the first row.
  4. If its enabled it will have a white outline.

iphone stop screen flipping

iPhone stop screen rotating in iOS6 and Below

To engage orientation lock in iOS 6 and below; follow these simple instructions:

  1. Double click the home button
    the one with the square on it on your iPhone / iPad.
  2. This takes you to the ‘multitasking’ part.
  3. Swipe right on the icons at the bottom.
  4. The first icon has a padlock on it.
  5. Click it to engage orientation lock

iphone stop screen rotating

You can now use your iPhone without the screen flipping!!!! You can lock the screen using this technique in either portrait or landscape mode.

To disable the lock, simply click the padlock icon again. Your iPhone will return to normal flipping mode :)

An accelerometer controls the screen flipping action inside your iPhone. A sensor inside the phone determines the orientation of the device. Its the same sensor that allows you to control driving games by tilting your screen to the left or right.

Edit: check here for a post about how to use your iPad’s side switch for portrait orientation lock

Sources: apple support


55 Comments

Tim Smith · July 26, 2010 at 2:40 am

Thanks Jonathan!

mike · August 30, 2010 at 4:55 pm

thank you so much this was sooooooooo annoying!

Raj · October 12, 2010 at 10:41 pm

Thank you very much! This has sorted out an ongoing headache without having to resort to 3rd party apps. Much appreciated!

mohammed ezzat amin · December 18, 2010 at 3:55 pm

thx so much i was annoyed so much and then i called apple store and hardware & softeware technician and no solution now i got the easy solution .. thx so much

    Tulip_321 · September 7, 2011 at 11:07 pm

    Thanks a lot man.NOw i can easily do my tasks on iphone while lying on bed :p

      RAJANMM · February 22, 2012 at 11:16 am

      IT REALLY WORKS THANKS A LOT

        LEAFY LANE · September 27, 2012 at 10:08 am

        BEEN DRIVING ME CRAZY TRYING TO VIEW MY PHOTOS.
        THANK YOU FOR SHARING YOUR KNOWLEDGE FREELY.

Glenn · January 17, 2011 at 4:08 pm

Top man! This has been bugging me for ages.

JT · January 18, 2011 at 9:30 am

Top man and a google search, cant fault you!!

Sam · January 28, 2011 at 9:07 pm

Perfect!!!

zele · March 6, 2011 at 4:21 pm

where can i find this program? i looked for if in cydia and installous…

zele · March 6, 2011 at 4:23 pm

hahahah sry people, i found it :D
THX MAN

Valiant Boy · April 11, 2011 at 12:49 pm

You little beuty!!!! I’ve been battling with my iphone Sat Nav for the last year as I use it on my motorbike, but it would flip upside down all the time, usually when coming up to intersections. This has fixed it. You made my day (and next time I get a major update, maybe I’ll read the release notes!!)

mari · May 26, 2011 at 5:34 am

THANK YOU!!

Heaven or hell- you choose! · June 14, 2011 at 1:55 am

I love the Internet as it made our lives in someways sooo much easier. I wanted to know where to set this lock. I googled . 1st link I clicked. I found it.

Allah the most high be praised for allowing human beings intelligence to have the Internet created.

Dddaza · July 2, 2011 at 9:24 pm

THANK YOU

Sw · July 7, 2011 at 3:58 am

Wish I’d looked sooner. Thank you!!!

Neovillan · July 12, 2011 at 2:44 pm

that has been driving me nuts many thanks

Bersashi · July 25, 2011 at 11:51 pm

Thanks u so much i was going crazy on how to fix this i give 5 stars out of 5

Piseyvicheth · August 2, 2011 at 8:53 am

Thank you so much. It’s very useful

guest · August 16, 2011 at 3:43 am

haha  thanks!  I couldnt figure out what I had done that was keeping my screen from rotating!

Cibai · September 18, 2011 at 5:10 pm

Hahaha. Super like! Simple free help. Thanks man

STacy · September 22, 2011 at 9:41 am

Thank you sooooo much!!!! Awesome!!!

Laurencoryell · October 14, 2011 at 5:12 am

Awesome! Now I look smarter than my husband when it comes to our iPhones! Haha

Zoheib86 · October 24, 2011 at 12:23 am

Thnx for making ppls life easier on the go… AND THNK YOU MR. JOBS FOR PUTTING IN THE POTRAIT LOCK FOR US….

Dendoubleds · November 20, 2011 at 10:45 am

Thank you so much mate. Its so hidden.

Tay · November 26, 2011 at 6:11 am

Thank you so fucking much!

xniccixd · December 28, 2011 at 1:55 pm

Thankyou this has driven me insane

Plasticelvis · January 4, 2012 at 3:54 pm

Wahoo!!! Thank you.

Nafi · February 13, 2012 at 11:25 am

Nice post. Thanks for the post.
There is another option for this which i user more which is to enable Touch accessibily option and use the shortcut. As mentioned other options are available too for Rotation lock on iPhone / iPod / iPad iOS

Nekeshapannell · February 22, 2012 at 6:02 am

Thanks!!!

Hayley Brandon · February 24, 2012 at 11:34 pm

That’s awesome! Thanks a million!! It worked

Hatem · February 25, 2012 at 10:26 pm

Thanks a lot, finally I unlocked again

Ass-123 · March 7, 2012 at 12:11 pm

U are amazing how did u find that

Sobetennis · March 9, 2012 at 4:45 am

Perfect. I swiped to the right though.

Fyhgftg · March 25, 2012 at 7:57 am

Thanks!!! Never would’ve found it!

Wasimkhanjadoon · April 1, 2012 at 6:24 am

u r a gem my frnd… its so hidden.. thanks alot for this beautiful post.

Convy · April 4, 2012 at 5:15 pm

Now that was easy! thanks

Colleen · April 9, 2012 at 2:58 am

Darn. I really was hoping to have it be able to lock when sideways, too.

Sophiagair_x · April 17, 2012 at 1:24 am

When I hold down the button it takes me to voice control?

Ndnanjel · May 21, 2012 at 2:05 pm

Thank you so much! :)

Bp · July 2, 2012 at 9:33 pm

That’s gold it works! Thanks

joseph rodriguez · August 4, 2012 at 3:34 am

wow thanks that was greatly appreciated… when i record videos now will it post sideways or vertical?

Becca Nelson · October 19, 2012 at 4:15 pm

Thank you soooo much. It has been driving me crazy.

Valerie · November 21, 2012 at 2:41 pm

Your instructional writing skills are top notch, the best! Detailed, exact, and easy to follow. The best I’ve seen for iphone tips and how-to’s. …And you even include visuals—so helpful. Thank you!

Toni · October 14, 2013 at 3:41 pm

Omg this is amazing… Slightly different on the new iOS 7.2 but rite direction thank you

ThatMatt · February 24, 2014 at 3:56 pm

Wonderful! Thank you! I made a lifehacker car-crib for my ipod touch, but having the music player in portrait mode is so frustrating! This is a great bit of knowledge!

Heather · September 8, 2014 at 4:00 pm

Every time I time I exit out of an app my screen turns sideways whether my portrait orientation is locked or not. How do I fix this?

Sarosh · September 11, 2014 at 10:59 am

Love it man…your too good at this .

Citizen Rosebud · December 9, 2014 at 8:12 am

Thank you

jean · December 23, 2014 at 3:49 pm

thank you. it worked beautifully

Susan · September 1, 2015 at 10:20 pm

Thank you!

Quita Thomas Jackson · March 11, 2016 at 1:22 am

I have a iPhone 6 & I was wondering how can I stop it from going sideways

Toestubber · November 21, 2016 at 3:06 pm

Still can’t lock it in landscape mode. For some idiotic reason.