Regarding the iPad Orientation Lock

It seems that everyone is up in arms about Apple’s decision to do away with the orientation lock on the iPad. I’ll agree that having that lock available as a physical switch has been pretty handy.

Initially, this switch was to be a mute switch just as the iPhones and iPod touches have them are designed. Somewhere along the line that was changed. iPhones and iPods are running iOS 4 now, and that capability is only a double tap and a swipe away. Since iPads only have iOS 3.2, it only made sense to give iPad users the orientation lock within easy grasp, given the less app-switching capabilities.

Now that iPad is about to catch up with its smaller siblings in regards to the iOS, it only makes sense to me that that we gain our mute switch back. My iPad follows me to bed at night; tucked within its case, plugged in, and iPhone resting on top of it (plugged in as well and ready to wake me up in the morning as my alarm). Sometimes I forget to silence the iPad. If only it were as simple as muting my iPhone – that is lean over and slide a switch. But alas, I can’t. I have to first pick up the iPhone, move it over, open the iPad cover, hit the home button, swipe to unlock, and then press and hold the volume switch, put everything back.

In sum, I’m looking forward to gaining my mute switch back. Should Apple include an option to select how I want that switch to act? It would be nice, I admit. But in the long run, it doesn’t really mean that much to me. I could take it or leave it – either direction. I also admit that either way it goes whether it’s a mute or a lock, whatever it’s NOT still won’t put me in that much of a bind. It’s definitely not worth the trouble this news seems to be generating.

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