What to do if your Galaxy phone's screen won't rotate

Last Update date : Jul 06. 2021

When watching videos or giving presentations with your Galaxy phone, you can change the screen mode from Landscape mode to Portrait mode or vice versa. You can lock the screen mode in Portrait or Landscape mode or set the screen to rotate automatically. If your screen doesn't rotate, check your Auto-rotate settings by following the guide below.

Before you try the recommendations below, be sure to check if your device's software and related apps are updated to the latest version. To update your mobile device's software, follow these steps: 

Step 1. Go to Settings > Software update.

Step 2. Tap on Download and install.

Step 3. Follow the on-screen instructions.

Make sure that Auto rotate is on

Auto rotate is on by default when you first receive your phone, but it can be disabled at any time and locked in Portrait or Landscape mode. Locking the screen in Portrait or Landscape mode is actually the same as turning off the Auto rotate. When Auto rotate is disabled, the screen will lock in Portrait or Landscape mode no matter how you hold the phone. Follow the steps below to set the screen rotation.

Step 1. Swipe down on the screen to open the Quick panel.

Step 2. If Auto rotate is currently enabled, a blue Auto rotate icon is displayed. Conversely, if the Auto rotate feature is currently disabled, a gray Portrait or Landscape mode icon is displayed.

Step 3. If the screen is locked in Portrait or Landscape mode and you need to change it, tap the icon (either Portrait or Landscape) to activate Auto rotate. If Auto rotate is already activated, you don't need to select anything.

auto rotate step

After Auto rotate is enabled, close the Quick panel. Next, hold your device in your desired position – either upright or sideways.


  • Depending on your current settings, you may see the Portrait, Landscape, or Auto Rotate icon on the Quick panel. The Portrait and Landscape icons are gray when they're active, while the Auto Rotate icon is blue when enabled.
  • Portrait mode is when the phone is upwards, and Landscape mode is when the phone is sideways.
  • If the app you are using doesn't support an orientation, it will not change when you move your phone. Not all apps work in both Portrait and Landscape mode.

If the screen is locked in Portrait or Landscape mode, the screen orientation icon will be labeled as such. The Auto rotate icon will only appear if the Auto rotate feature is activated. If you see an icon that says Portrait or Landscape, you can tap it to enable Auto rotate. Or, you can just leave it alone if you'd prefer to keep your phone's screen orientation locked.

landscape portrait mode

  ① Landscape mode         ② Portrait mode      

If you cannot find the screen orientation icon, it's possible that you accidentally removed it from the Quick panel. To add the screen orientation icon to the Quick panel follow the steps below.

Step 1. Tap More options (the three vertical dots) on the Quick panel.

Step 2. Tap Edit buttons.

Step 3. Tap and hold the Auto rotate icon, and then drag it to your desired position on the Quick panel.

Step 4. Tap Done. Now the Auto rotate icon will be easy to reach and you can adjust your screen’s rotation settings accordingly.

Even if Auto rotate is enabled, you can temporarily lock the screen from rotating. This can be useful if you want to rotate your phone without changing the screen orientation when viewing a PDF or document.

To lock your phone screen from rotating for a while, hold your finger on the screen while you rotate your phone. As long as you hold your finger in place, the screen stays the same without changing the screen orientation. When you lift your finger, the screen will rotate back to match the orientation of your device.

auto rotate lock temporarily

If the screen does not rotate even when Auto rotate is enabled, turn off the phone and turn it on again. Restarting the phone may simply solve the problem. Follow the steps below to restart and try again.

Step 1. Swipe down on the screen to open the Quick panel.

Step 2. Tap the Power icon, and then tap Restart.

restart your phone

If Auto rotate is still not working after restarting, try again in Safe mode. If there is no problem in Safe Mode, it may be a problem caused by an installed third-party app on your phone. To find which app is causing the issue, you can try uninstalling the apps in the order of the last installation. Follow the steps below to enter Safe mode.

Step 1. Open Quick settings. Tap the Power icon at the top of the screen.

Step 2. Tap and hold Power off until the Safe mode icon is displayed.

Step 3. Tap Safe mode. If you've entered Safe mode successfully, you will see Safe mode displayed at the bottom of the screen.

start your phone in safe mode

Note: Device screenshots and menus may vary depending on the device model and software version.

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