Screen Orientation – Portrait or Landscape

Should you run your screens in portrait or landscape orientation?

There are no hard and fast rules but the type of content you want to display along with how far away the screen might be viewed from might be a deciding factor along with where you want to put the screens.

Lists tend to look better on a portrait screen as you can get a longer list on it for a given font size, as long as each line isn’t too long. If you were wanting to show an image to the side of of the text a wide screen layout might be the better option.

The image below shows how the same sort of page design could look on both types of screen.

Landscape and Portrait Comparison

If you want the same content on all the screens then ideally they should all be mounted in the same orientation, otherwise you will have to create content for the two different orientations.

A large screen mounted in the conventional landscape orientation might not be that good a fit if it’s mounted on something like a support column in a building with a fairly low roof as it could protrude either side of the column and be a hazard to people or when you move things like stock around.

In that case a screen mounted in portrait orientation would be a better option.

If you’re mounting it on a wall then it doesn’t really make much difference which orientation you decide to use. Bear in mind that most video is created in landscape format so that might effect your choice of mounting.

As as footnote, a screen mounted in portrait orientation can be split into three different zones, and each zone will have the same aspect ratio of a landscape screen.