Why Do So Many Bloggers And Programmers Have A Vertical Monitor?

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The advantage of using a vertical monitor is that it allows you to achieve an increase in productivity when undertaking tasks that require working with a large volume of text.  

Think long form writing, or coding, or even live chat on streaming platforms such as Twitch. Each involves interacting with text that can take up an entire screen. 

The many, shortened lines of text that can be displayed upon a vertical monitor makes it easier to digest and contextualize information such as the format of an article or the thread of conversation. 

Previously, we explored how your monitor can be customised to improve your posture, as well as display settings to look after you eyes. 

Well now we’re going to look at the Pros and Cons of flipping your monitor into portrait mode (with examples) to see whether this is another office hack that you might benefit from.  

Why do bloggers use vertical monitors?

Bloggers know, as Bill Gates once wrote, that content is king.  

The more well researched and well written posts that you can produce and post online, the greater the chance that traffic will increase to your website. 

Creating content that pays attention to as many of the over 200 ranking factors that Google uses will improve the chances of an article ranking well. 

Using a monitor in vertical mode really helps paint a clearer picture of the format and account for ranking factors such  as reading level and user friendly layout that much better.

We write on a fairly basic 27″ Dell S2715H monitor and with the zoom function on the Chrome browser left at 100% and the monitor in landscape format, from the top of the post we have visibility of 10 lines of text

Landscape Display
Vertical Display

Using the same monitor and settings, but now turning the display to vertical mode, instantly you can gain an appreciation of the article structure.

The Elementor page builder now allows 28 shorter lines of text to be seen, and with it a far greater proportion of the whole article. 

Having written and formatted hundreds of posts in the past year, I can assure you this helps

In addition to the greater appreciation of context and format, the shorter the lines of text can more accurately they can be tracked and read by the eye. This is the same reason multi-column text is favored by newspapers and magazines.

Why do programmers use vertical monitors?

BenQ advocate the benefits of vertical monitors to programmers by stating an 82% increase in visible code (84 lines vs 46 lines) when making the move away from landscape mode. 

As with other text heavy disciplines, the more lines of code in view at any one time, the greater the appreciation of context can be obtained such as the definition of a variable, or when comparing code during a merge.

Of course, the productivity benefit of viewing more and more text has to end somewhere.

Theoretically you could keep adding monitors in a daisy chain formation until your GPU runs out of power, however our individual ability to grasp and process information might become overloaded when presented with a large volume of text at any one time. 

The disadvantages of using vertical monitors

  • Viewing video on a vertical monitor also becomes awkward as moving pictures are often filmed in a 16:9 aspect ratio. This is why vertical monitors are usually favored by text based applications. 
  • Many online app struggle to be responsive to the vertical switch. YouTube for example ends up displaying a small video above a huge stack of comments and thumbnail images.
  • Multiple windows open at any one time also becomes a bit of a problem as they must be stacked one on top of the other, rather than side by side. Over time the slight motion of looking up to the top window can cause additional strain on your neck.


How do you turn a monitor into portrait mode?

There’s two elements to consider when converting your monitor display from the traditional landscape orientation to portrait….

(I) The physical aspect of turning the monitor, and (II) changing the display settings within the operating system. 

Occasionally the stand supplied with the monitor has the ability to spin and hold the monitor vertically.

For sheer ease of switching between horizontal and vertical displays the BenQ BL2480T is a good example of a low-cost, high quality monitor that has a fantastic swivel and height adjustable stand.

Alternatively a monitor arm will allow any VESA compliant monitor to attached and quickly flipped on its side. 

With the screen physically flipped vertically, the operating system now needs to be adjusted to reflect this change. 

In Windows a vertical screen can be achieved by:

  1. Right clicking on the desktop and selecting ‘Display Settings’
  2. In the ‘Scale and Layout’ sub-section, change the ‘Display Orientation’ dropdown from Landscape to Portrait
Chris Dosser

Chris Dosser

Co-Founder of Eden Indoors

Enjoys sharing solutions to problems encountered whilst building and improving his own home office over the past 8 years. Environmental graduate with a love for biophilic design at home and houseplants. Obsessive about making information easier to understand and simpler to digest.

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