https://www.duolingo.com/EdBaker9

App update for Android forces portrait mode.

The latest app update for Android now forces portrait mode. Auto-rotate is on and it won't switch to landscape mode. I use a 10" tablet with a large font to be able to see the words. I guess I will have to go back to the web site version. But it would be nice to be able to continue with the version/mode I have become accustomed to in so many levels.

If it is at all possible, can the app be switched back to let the user choose the screen mode and not be forced to portrait only. Love duoling but hard to use after so much acclimation! Ed

April 6, 2018

49 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/DaveWilson346844

So the fact that it says this at: https://support.duolingo.com/hc/en-us/articles/360002281731-Where-is-the-Android-landscape-mode means this was an intentional change... WHY? How could this be a positive change in anyway? This along with the crowns system it's like they are trying to make people quit...

April 10, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/MichaelRob57284

I agree - it feels like a completely different app, depending on which device you're using. Come on, Duolingo - you've got a world class application - don't spoil it by making daft and inexplicable changes!!

June 4, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Dan487197

Dear Duolingo, please reverse this ridiculous decision. Many, many people use the app on tablets using bluetooth keyboards. Portrait mode is useless.

April 14, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/MichaelRob57284

I agree - in fact I bought my tablet recently, precisely with Duolingo in mind, thinking that I could use it in landscape mode, to make it more readable. Come on, Duolingo - wake up!!

June 4, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/LICA98

yeah same problem for me too

one solution is to delete the app then go here and install the version 3.69.4, it lets you choose

April 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/PP3sIo

I'm using an android tablet and the only version the google play store allows is the same one that forces Portrait mode. seems unfixable. Shame, but I cannot use the keyboard in that size so I'll just have to stop using Duolingo altogether, as I only used it on the tablet.

April 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/PeterFWhyte

Yes, I have the same problem with my keyboard. Bring back landscape mode. There is no good reason, in fact, there is no reason at all for forcing portrait mode on everyone. It's poor design. And it's mighty annoying. BRING BACK LANDSCAPE MODE NOW!

May 13, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/LICA98

you don't have to download it from the play store

April 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/PP3sIo

Sorry, but I don't understand. I've never installed apps any other way.

April 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/LICA98

https://apkpure.com/duolingo-learn-languages-free/com.duolingo

here you can install older versions of duolingo (and other apps)

if you want the version with landscape mode install the version labeled 3.69.4

April 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/PP3sIo

that worked! eventually. the link wouldn't open, but I searched for it, and then had to change the security settings, but it did restore the older version so landscape once more. Grazie.

April 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/PP3sIo

I will try that. thanks.

April 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Anita98586

Thanks. This worked for me, and it was a good exercise in learning how to install apps from somewhere other than the play store.. useful to know for future reference with other apps that get worse with "improvements"...

April 9, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Thomas.Heiss

Quote: install the version 3.69.4, it lets you choose

You can also install the Android V3.72.2 version.
It still has the landscape mode, club lists, club title and club description.

I am not sure where the main differences between V3.69.4 and V3.72.2 are.

But the "club member detail view" (to add club members as friends so you can follow them on the web leaderboard) was only introduced with V3.80.2, but this version removed all of the other mentioned features.

https://forum.duolingo.com/comment/26991732/Android-Clubs-WARNING-New-App-Version-V3-77-5-from-04-13-2018-removes-many-useful-club-functions

May 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/vvsey

Totally agreed, I have the same problem. I can't use the app anymore.

April 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/RinTinCan

Same problem here... after last night's update, it doesn't rotate into landscape mode anymore on my Android tablet. Keyboard is too small in portrait mode, which makes the app useless.

@Duolingo: Please don't force portrait mode; it makes the app useless for many tablet users.

April 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/pentaan

You can submit a bug report via https://support.duolingo.com/hc/en-us/articles/204728264-How-do-I-report-a-bug-

Note:
The more users are complaining, the more chance Duolingo's staff is going to solve this issue.

April 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/PP3sIo

thanks for that. done. I see it links to a statement saying you can't use the android app in landscape (not mentioning this is a sudden change!) and to use it via the browser instead.

April 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/IanCaliban

I can't imagine why Duolingo made this ridiculous change, which has annoyed a significant number of users, whilst yielding the company no discernible advantage whatsoever.

I myself use the app on a Galaxy Tab 3 with a hardware keyboard that attaches along the length of the tablet. Duolingo, along with any other app that doesn't support landscape mode, is effectively useless now, unless you want to get a serious crick in your neck from holding your head at 90° for long periods at a time.

There are actually a couple of practical fixes for this problem, and one theoretical. The theoretical and optimal fix is that Duolingo reinstate support for landscape mode at their earliest convenience. That doesn't appear to be forthcoming, however.

Practical fix #1 is to edit the app's APK. Specifically, the AndroidManifest.xml file needs to be edited, and all references to android:screenOrientation changed from 'portrait' to 'unspecified', or if numeric changed from '1' to '-1'. Reconstitute the APK, install it, and away you go.

The problem with this hack is that it's finicky, time-consuming, and needs to be done every time Duolingo is updated. Or, you need to disable automatic updates for this app on the Play Store, but that has its own disadvantages.

Practical fix #2 requires a rooted Android device running the Xposed framework. If you have that, install a module called App Settings, which allows screen orientation to be overridden on a per app basis. Configure the module to 'force auto-rotation' for Duolingo, and then it will prevent Duolingo from asserting its preference.

Both of the above hacks have been tested by me and work, but they are obviously not for everyone, and therefore far from ideal.

Duolingo, listen to your users and reinstate landscape mode!

June 13, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Dan487197

and as I've stated in a previous post, the most annoying thing about all this is that Duolingo advertises its app in landscape mode in the PlayStore!! It's quite breathtaking. Will try your fix, but am uncertain how I access the xml file on an Android tablet.

June 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Dan487197

What REALLY annoys me is that when you go to the play store and search for the duolingo app, there it with the first 10 screenshots of it showing it in LANDSCAPE mode!!! How dare they? They actually ADVERTISE it as having landscape mode, yet don't allow it!! I've paid for the original and by far the best - Rosetta Stone, but not everyone can do that unfortunately

June 7, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/IanCaliban

It really was quite obnoxious to force portrait mode without any warning.

I use Duolingo on a Galaxy Tab S3 with a hardware keyboard that connects along the bottom of the tablet in landscape mode. Because portrait mode is now enforced, the app can't be used with the hardware keyboard unless I want to read what I'm typing at 90 degrees.

Please reinstate landscape mode.

April 17, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/pentaan
April 18, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/vvsey

This one looks like an attempt to purposefully upset the community. Well, it works! I wonder what they are hoping to achieve here. Maybe they got a buyout offer from MySpace?

April 18, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/EdBaker9

If that is the case, they need to change their app on Google play since it shows 11 of the 15 demo pictures as a landscape tablet screen!

It did work, and worked really well in landscape. It's kind of like taking video on a cellphone in portrait mode. It works, but it really sucks!

April 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/PP3sIo

It's rather telling there are no voting buttons or comments mechanism on that statement!

April 18, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/pentaan

Okay. I will replace "statement" by "help text".

April 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/wendap

Hello, can You resolve problem with portrait orientation only, please? My tablet has jack for haedphones on right side - in portrait orientation is very uncorfortable for me using tablet with jack on bottom side. I hope, that is not very big change in source code .Thank You

April 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ajegeni

Totally agree, the compulsory portrait mode is not practical and ruining the experience. Please Duolingo fix this.

April 13, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/DanielLeon1992

Disappearance of landscape mode has arrived to iOS three days ago with version 5.2.60. I am significantly faster typing in landscape. It's frustrating going through a lesson knowing that it's taking me twice as long as it used to. Not to mention, portrait mode is less comfortable for my hands.

November 15, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/DaveWilson346844

It's even worse on a phone, the keyboard is so small in portait it takes twice as long to write stuff cos it's so easy to hit the wrong keys...

April 10, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Thomas.Heiss

[Android Clubs] WARNING: New App Version V3.77.5 from 04/13/2018 removes many useful club functions

Not only the landscape mode has been removed!

  • A) V3.77.5 additionally has the problem that the scrolling in the Club Leaderboard freezes for me.

  • B) V3.77.5 has problem with writing text in the clubs (freeze / I have to go to Android "Home" and then switch back to the app).

  • C) I think I remember that one of the previous app versions (my latest before was V3.72.2?) gave the same above error B) that the text reproduceable freezes when I freely typed a new comment in my club...I could not completely write (finish) my text like with some older versions. Would have to re-test with V3.72.2 and V3.6.x.

I will try with an older version the next couple of days...

My personal feeling is, that quality of newer app versions goes downhill...especially when I need to use the app with Android emulators like KOPlayer.

Staff seems to directly release from the trunk/master developer branch without any previous 2-4 weeks testing phase (or can not re-test with older Android OSes) :-(

App users are the very early BETA testers...

April 27, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/pentaan

Maybe, we are all "very early BETA testers" because Duolingo does not have enough income for hiring professional alpha and beta testers.

April 28, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/EdBaker9

I found another way to use the current app in landscape mode... Mostly since I wanted the keyboard in landscape.

If you have a current version of Android (mine is N). Start the Duolingo app, then click on the app switcher icon (Android system). Turn your tablet to landscape and choose the Duolingo app without releasing it, pull it to the shaded side and it will be in split screen. You can choose another app for the other half of the screen too.

You can resize the Duolingo app to fill 2/3 of the screen, but the keyboard will be in full landscape mode.

If you are unsure how to do this with my instructions, just search for "android N split screen". Not totally happy, but at least I can quit making typos and getting it marked as wrong answers due to the small keyboard.

Hope that helps, Ed

April 27, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/PP3sIo

so one installs an older version to restore landscape. ok. then the crowns thing takes over, so install an even older version. % progress plus streak was all I cared about. then a while ago the % is gone as well. I'm nearly finished. just got 3 topics to go, but I'll never see my final %!

bah.

I really enjoyed it at first, but with all this changes, they are forcing me out. I will finish to the end of my reverse tree and then I'm done. well done company, change enough to lose a customer.

(oh and I'd have happily paid a bit for extra vocab, or just in general, but expecting the same amount of money as a Netflix sub for 5mins a day language practice? away ye go.)

August 25, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/pentaan

I agree, but you might tell this the CEO by commenting in this discussion
https://forum.duolingo.com/comment/28202855

August 25, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/PP3sIo

done! Grazie.

August 25, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/aoidaisy

Another possible solution that's worked for me... There's an app called "Rotation Control". If you install that then you can force Duolingo to show in landscape mode on a tablet. I've been able to successfully use it in landscape.

January 31, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/CPho

Thanks very much for this. I'm seeing a few display glitches, but the view is still far preferable to locked portrait. Thank you again!

February 2, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/MichaelRob57284

I agree - this is a completely cretinous decision. And I can't believe that I'm discovering this discussion a year after it was raised. Is there anyone at home at Duolingo??

June 4, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/MichaelRob57284

Nice one! Solved within 2 minutes - thank you. (Duolingo - are you listening??)

June 4, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Thomas.Heiss

@MichaelRob

Quote: Is there anyone at home?

Not really.

Too busy with hacking code for Leagues, removing language levels, rolling out new web UIs which crash my Firefox V52.9.0esr browser on my older Laptop, etc. :-)

June 4, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/PP3sIo

the old version reverted to the new Portrait only version by next time I opened the tablet. so there is no viable solution. grr.

April 7, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/vvsey

You may have auto update of apps enabled on your tablet. If so, you need to disable that and never again update Duolingo. Or at least until they find their way back to the users.
My app is also back to landscape mode. Additionally, I went back to version 3.56.1, following the recommendation found here:

https://www.duolingo.com/comment/26854073/If-you-want-to-revert-from-Crown-Levels-here-s-how-to-do-it

And the Crown system is gone. What a relief.

April 9, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/PP3sIo

Yes, thanks, that was the problem. A friend told me that the setting to switch off auto-updates was inside the menu for Google Play, not on the device itself. They don't make it easy! So yes, I am now in Landscape mode on an older version. if they aren't careful they are going to 'improve' themselves out of existence as has happened with other popular things.

April 9, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Thorpernicus

Yes, I would like to see this feature introduced at least on a tablet as it is awkward to hold in portrait mode.

November 11, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/enawd

Any word? Is landscape mode coming back?

May 10, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/LICA98

it's not unfortunately :/ but you can download an app from the play store (search for "rotate screen") that will force rotate the screen to landscape

June 10, 2019
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