iPad's Orientation Lock to Revert to Mute Switch

A look at the beta version of iOS 4.2 that was recently released shows that iPad users might be a little annoyed when it rolls out. Originally, the hardware switch on the right hand side of the iPad was used to mute the device. Just prior to launch, it became the orientation lock. Now, it's changing back again.

Starting with iOS 4.2, when when users want to lock the orientation, which is handy when trying to read in bed, for example, they will have to access the new multitasking bar, swipe it to the left, and select the screen orientation lock. This procedure will mirror way that orientation lock occurs on iPhone and iPod touch since iOS 4 was released.

While that's all good, those who may have been using the iPad for months will probably be confused for a while, and we know at least one person who would ask why tech companies "can't leave things alone."

As we said, we can see the consistency reasoning behind the move, however.

Other changes coming to the iPad in iOS 4.2, but which were not mentioned in the very brief overview given at Apple's Sept. event:
  • The YouTube app will have the current YouTube thumbs-up / down rating system; the company gave the old five-star system the thumbs-down in March, but naturally required an update to the OS to move it to the iOS, since it's a default iOS app.
  • iPad folders can hold up to 20 applications, as opposed to the iPhone and iPod Touch's 12 (which makes sense due to the iPad's greater screen real estate).
  • Also on the multitasking bar will be a brightness slider, so no longer will users have to go to settings to muck with brightness (only Apple's own apps have access to this functionality in-app; third-parties do not, as of yet).
  • 3G iPads will see the same algorithm modifications for signal bars measurements that the iPhone 4 did.
  • Font changing in the built-in Notes app: you can go from the default "Marker Felt" to Helvetica and "Chalkboard."
iOS 4.2 is scheduled to release in November; hopefully it won't roll out on Turkey weekend.
Tags:  Apple, ipad, ios