If you’re reading this then probably you:
1. Have problems with flashing your Android player/TV box/set-top box/dongle with custom firmware in order to enable rotation support.
2. Bought an Android player which cannot display portrait and would like to know what to do with it.
3. Want to learn more about rotation issues and how-to.
4. Would like to buy an Android device with the rotation support already built-in.
You’re in the right place.
Android operating system on your device usually comes when it is set to be displayed in landscape mode, that means the same way you watch your television. However, some people would like to use applications that work vertically (I think that digital signage apps are the most popular one), that means in portrait mode, when the screen is rotated to be standing like a portrait picture. Most people just call it “screen rotation” support.
In most cases when you buy an Android tablet or an Android TV, you have this ability already there, built-in, so all you need is to physically rotate your screen and the Android operating system will rotate itself to adjust the screen. However, in most cases of Android TV boxes, set-top boxes, dongles and players you don’t have this ability.
So, what do you do?
In most cases, you will flash the device with a custom firmware. That is like putting an image file of a different Android OS (one that has support rotation ability). It is called “custom” or “customized” cause someone already modified the original OS and made it different for the customer (you). Flashing Android firmware is a process that should be done only by people with technical skills, as flashing might defect your Android device in some cases, so that’s something that you should take into consideration. This is why some people will prefer to pay to Android expert to do the flashing for them or would prefer to ship the device to the manufacturer, so he will do it for them (not all manufacturers agree or can do that).
Even if you’re a tech person, you still might encounter numerous problems when coming to flash an Android device. When I tried to flash a Minix Neo X7, every “expert” around told me “it is easy”, “follow the instructions” and “it is straightforward”. Yeah, right. When others do it, it is easy. When you do it – expect the problems…
Another option is to use an app that adds support for screen rotation. Just go to the Google Play market and search for “support rotation” or “support screen rotation”. You will find dozens of apps that can provide this ability. I suspect that most of them are meant for mobile and not for TV box/dongle/player, that’s why I haven’t found any of them that really does it for my TV box. If you find one, please let me know.
The last possible solution is to use an app like ES3 that is basically a file explorer with rooting ability that can root only some of the Android devices (like MK908) and with specific instructions you can set permanent screen rotation on the device without flashing it.
If nothing helps, better rotate your head to watch the screen…