News: iPad Mute Switch Here to Stay with 4.2

Posted on October 25, 2010

If you were hoping Apple would give you the option to use the hardware switch on the iPad as either a mute switch or orientation lock switch with iOS 4.2, you’re going to have to look at jailbroken alternatives. Over the weekend, a reader of 9 to 5 Mac emailed Steve Jobs and got a pretty simple response.

As part of iOS 4.2, Apple transformed the iPad’s orientation lock switch into a mute switch, leaving orientation locking as a step of double-tapping the home button, swiping left, and selecting it (as on the iPhones with multitasking). A number of people complained, especially since the iPad didn’t need quick and immediate muting, as compared to a phone. One reader, Robert, sent an email to Steve Jobs:

Robert:In iOS 4.2 for iPad is the switch on the side going to be the mute and not screen orientation lock from now on?

Jobs:Yep. Sent from my iPhone

Robert: Are you planning to make that a changeable option?

Jobs: Nope.

It’s always funny when people email Steve Jobs over random development/customer service questions, but more importantly, what would you rather have on the side of your iPad…a mute switch or an orientation lock?

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