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Landscape view on a mobile device

8 years ago from , Visual & UX designer

A recurring question of late has been that of the behaviour of a mobile website in landscape view. I've long been of the opinion that content and behaviour dictate interaction, and in the past have always included landscape viewports in this reasoning - which is to say 'can turning this device on its side help the user better recieve the content?'. Things like image galleries which obviously benefit from a more horizontal orientation are easy enough to justify, but I have always drawn the line at the point where a horizontal view doesn't intrinsically add to the experience. A small nagging voice in the back of my head has recently started asking me if a landscape view has started to become an expectation in users, and thus a valid viewport to try and optimise for. Hopefully the nagging voice was just that, but interested to hear you guyses thoughts on the matter.

2 comments

  • Craig RozynskiCraig Rozynski, almost 8 years ago

    Isn't portrait the default orientation? I'll only turn to landscape if it's video or an image gallery. I have no data to back that up. Anyone done user testing? Is portrait your default?

    The other argument is that we should be designing breakpoints for when content starts to look ugly, breaks, and/or when line count gets too long, rather than for a standard set of predefined breakpoints, which will become redundant over time.

    2 points
  • Danny Webster, almost 8 years ago

    hah glad to hear I'm not alone on this one. I guess that breakpoints should ultimately be dictated by the content's behaviour and presentation, rather than set pixel dimensions - which as you say will get outdated.

    I would be curious to know what kind of percentage of users are running orientation lock on their devices - this thought hadn't even occurred to me.

    0 points