The ability to automatically rotate your iPhone’s screen is a feature you might take for granted. It’s only when the auto-rotation doesn’t work that you appreciate its seamless operation. Unfortunately, autorotation also doesn’t work when you see how frustrating it can be when your iPhone doesn’t do what you expect it to.

Whether you’re reorienting your screen to watch a video or trying to switch back to portrait view, auto-rotate that doesn’t work can be a major annoyance. Fortunately, there are several solutions you can try to get your iPhone’s autorotation working again.

Solution #1 – Deactivate the screen rotation lock

In addition to the auto-rotate feature, your iPhone allows you to lock your screen in place. This ensures that the position of the screen does not change, no matter how many times you rotate your phone.

Screen lock is useful when watching a long video or playing a game. You don’t want the screen to rotate during your activity, which makes screen locking essential. However, you may forget to deactivate your screen lock or accidentally activate it.

You can deactivate the screen lock fairly easily, although the method varies depending on whether your iPhone has a home button.

If your phone doesn’t have a home button, follow these steps:

  1. Swipe down from the top right corner of your iPhone’s screen to access the “Control Center”.
  2. Tap the “Rotation Lock” icon. This is a padlock with a circle with an arrow drawn around it.
  3. Check the text “Portrait Orientation Lock” that appears at the top of the “Control Center”. Tap this text so that it says “Portrait Orientation Lock: Off.”
  4. Exit the “Control Center” and try to rotate your screen.

If your iPhone has a home button, do the following:

  1. Swipe up from the bottom of your phone to open the Control Center.
  2. Find the “Portrait Orientation Lock” button and tap it if it’s enabled.
  3. Exit “Control Center” and rotate your iPhone to check if the solution worked.

Solution No. 2 – Restart your app

It could be that an app you’re using isn’t running automatically, even if you’ve checked that you’ve turned off the screen lock. This can happen if the app crashes, which means you have to restart the app to reactivate the auto-rotation.

Use this method if your iPhone doesn’t have a home button:

  1. Swipe up from the bottom of the screen to open the “Home Bar”.
  2. Press and hold the “Home Bar” for a few seconds to enter the “App Switcher” function.
  3. Find the app you want to restart and swipe up on the preview to close the app.
  4. Find the app’s icon on your home screen and tap it to restart.
  5. If necessary, rotate your phone to see if auto-rotate has been reactivated.

The method is similar if your phone has a home button:

  1. Double-tap the Home button and select “App Switcher.”
  2. Find the app you want to close and swipe up on the preview.
  3. Return to your home screen and tap the app to relaunch it.
  4. Rotate your phone to check if the fix worked.

Solution No. 3 – Check the screen rotation functionality

Some apps don’t support screen rotation, so you may not be aware if you don’t know in advance. Additionally, the app may not tell you about the lack of rotation support, leaving you scratching your head over the issue.

There’s an easy way to check if your app is compatible with auto-rotate. Just open an app you know is compatible and rotate your screen. If autorotation works for the compatible app, the app you tried to use probably doesn’t support the autorotation feature.

If so, you will not be able to rotate the screen at any time when using the incompatible app. But at least you know the reason why.

Solution No. 4 –

Often, a reboot is all you need to fix your iPhone’s technical issues. When it comes to autorotation, a reboot may solve your problem if you have checked that your screen lock is deactivated but autorotation is still not working.

  1. Press and hold the side button of your iPhone until you get the “Slide to Power Off” option.
    • You must press and hold the side button, volume up button, and volume down button at the same time on iPhone X and later models.
  2. Drag the “Slide to Power Off” slider to the right to turn off your phone.
  3. Press and hold the side button to turn your iPhone back on.
  4. Check the autorotate functionality when your iPhone is running.

Solution #5 – Disable Display Zoom

Larger versions of the iPhone, such as the iPhone Max, allow you to rotate your home screen layout and offer autorotation in your apps. If your home screen layout doesn’t rotate, you may have a problem with your phone’s display zoom.

Display Zoom magnifies text and icons for easier reading. However, using Display Zoom may also prevent your phone from fully using the auto-rotate feature. Deactivating Display Zoom solves this problem:

  1. Launch the “Settings” app and navigate to “Display & Brightness”.
  2. Scroll to “Show Zoom” and tap “View”.
  3. Switch the “Screen Zoom” to “Standard” and tap the “Set” button, which is located in the top right corner.

Your iPhone will restart as part of the process of applying your new zoom settings. When it turns back on, navigate to your home screen layout and check the autorotate feature. You should also see that your text and icons are smaller because the display zoom is in “Standard” mode.

Solution No. 6 – Update iOS

In some cases, using an older version of iOS can cause compatibility issues that prevent autorotation from working. For example, you might be using a version of an app that has been updated to run on a newer version of iOS than you have. While the app may still work at the basic level, compatibility issues may cause autorotation to stop working.

Updating to the latest version of iOS can solve this problem:

  1. Open the “Settings” app and tap “General”.
  2. Select “Software Update” and wait for your iPhone to search for an available update.
  3. If there is an update for a new version of iOS, select the “Download and Install” option.

You may have to wait a few minutes for your iPhone to complete the installation. The device may also reboot during this process. Wait for your phone to turn itself back on and install the new version of iOS before testing your autorotation.

Solution No. 7 – Reset your settings

If there is no other solution to restore your iPhone’s autorotate functionality, you can try resetting the device to restore its original functionality. Consider this option as a last resort. Resetting your iPhone will erase all your preferences, passwords, and Wi-Fi settings. Fortunately, your phone keeps most of your personal information, such as contacts and photos.

Follow these steps to reset your iPhone:

  1. Launch the “Settings” app and tap “General”.
  2. Select “Reset” from the list of options.
  3. Choose “Reset All Settings” and enter your iPhone’s passcode when prompted.
  4. Wait for your iPhone to complete the reset. It may reboot during this process.
  5. Test the autorotate function.

Solution No. 8 – Visit an Apple Store

Your iPhone uses a sensor called an accelerometer for the autorotate function. That sensor is fairly sensitive, meaning it could break if you drop your iPhone or something unusual happens to the device’s electronics.

If you’ve tried every solution with the device’s software, you may have a problem with your accelerometer. Unfortunately, this is not an easy problem to fix on your own as you will need to purchase a replacement sensor and may void the warranty on the phone.

Visit your local Apple Store if you suspect a damaged accelerometer is causing your autorotation problems. The Apple Genius in the store can take your phone for repair especially if the solutions they try don’t work.

Keep in mind that you may have to pay for repairs, depending on the status of your warranty and the cause of the sensor’s failure.

Get back Autorotate with easy solutions

A series of software glitches as well as a major hardware problem can be the cause of autorotation not working on your iPhone. By identifying the cause of the problem, you can quickly implement a solution that restores functionality. But if you don’t know what caused the problem, going through the solutions in this article will help you troubleshoot your device and fix autorotation quickly.

How valuable do you think autorotate is when using your iPhone? Have you ever found yourself in a situation where not having autorotation caused problems? Let us know in the comments below.


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