How to enable landscape mode on your Android phone's home screen (with Google Now)

How to enable landscape mode on your Android phone's home screen (with Google Now)
Earlier this year, Google made some important changes to its Google Now launcher, one of them being the ability to enable landscape mode on phone home screens. 

Sure enough, many Android apps can be used in both portrait and landscape mode by default, but that's not the case when it comes to your phone's home screen - normally, this always stays in portrait mode (unless you use a third party app to force screen orientation any way you want). So let's see how to bring landscape mode to your handset's home screen, shall we?

First of all, your phone needs to use Google Now as the default launcher. Nexus devices have this pre-installed out of the box, but, if you own a different kind of Android phone, you can get Google Now for free from Google Play (check out the download link at the end of this article). Once you've downloaded Google Now, make it your default launcher (in case you don't know, here's how to do that).

From the Google Now launcher, long press anywhere on the home screen. Then, tap on the Settings button that shows up in the lower-right corner. In the Settings menu, at the bottom of the list, you'll see an "Allow rotation" toggle - obviously, you'll need to tap on that if you want to enable landscape mode. Once this is enabled, you'll see that your phone's home screen automatically rotates whenever you turn it to the left or right. You could say that this kind of transforms your handset into a small tablet. If you don't find this useful, you can always turn off the "Allow rotation" toggle.

Unfortunately for folks using older versions of Android, it seems that Auto rotation in Google Now only works on handsets running Android 6.0 Marshmallow or newer.


download: Google Now

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8 Comments

1. zunaidahmed

Posts: 1183; Member since: Dec 24, 2011

Could be useful for phones with larger screens ; )

4. 47AlphaTango

Posts: 729; Member since: Sep 27, 2015

True, my suggestions would be starting from 5.5 inch going up to 7 inch phones. Also, the screen must be a 2k or a 1440 resolution with a ppi atleast 600 and above. Could be a super amoled or an OLED display.

2. MrElectrifyer

Posts: 3960; Member since: Oct 21, 2014

Lol, this is new to Google Now launcher and has been restricted to Android Marshmallow? That's just lame and pathetic, Nova Launcher has been offering this since I got my OnePlus One in 2014 with KitKat...wouldn't be surprised if this is what stock android comes with, would be just another example of it showing its nonsense limitations.

3. zunaidahmed

Posts: 1183; Member since: Dec 24, 2011

most manufacture launchers have this locked, so this is new to some I guess

5. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

To me its a pointless feature. You're just gonna launch and app and leave the home screen anyways. I mean, its not gonna fit more icons and it isnt offering any benefit.

7. MrElectrifyer

Posts: 3960; Member since: Oct 21, 2014

When using apps just in landscape (video streaming, web browsing, etc.), it ergonomically helps to have the entire home screen and app drawer icons/widgets/labels in landscape instead of tilting your head as you navigate to that app icon/widget (if you just want a quick glance at some info)...

6. hurrycanger

Posts: 1761; Member since: Dec 01, 2013

This works on Lollipop. Not exclusive to mashmallow.

8. steelew

Posts: 219; Member since: Jun 04, 2012

I just started doing this with Nova launcher recently. My only complaint is that the icon layout is the same so in Nova the icons get smaller in landscape. I ended up using Kustom wallpaper to have different walls for each orientation.

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