Why Is It So Difficult To Set A Ringtone On Your Smartphone


Are you ever just so bored of the plain old ringtone you just want to keep your old phone on silent forever? I know the feeling. But then, you remember all of the awesome custom ringtones you could have on your new smartphone. So you go through the process of setting a new ringtone, only to find out that it’s not as simple as it should be.

Let us explain.

Picking The Right Song’s Harder Than You Think


First, you have to find the perfect song.

It has to be just the right length, and it can’t be too loud or too soft. Also, the song has to be ringtone worthy. We mean, we love us some “Stairway to Heaven”, but let’s be honest, that gentle guitar strumming isn’t exactly a tune that’ll make us even notice that the phone is ringing.

Also, you can’t set your favorite song as a ringer. After all, you don’t want to get sick of your favorite tune, don’t you?

But let’s just assume you’ve got this thing handled. You know the song, you’ve found just the right chorus so you’re pumped for each convo etc. Let’s assume you got that.

How Do You Even Download A Song?


Now, you have to figure out how to get the song onto your phone.

If you’re lucky enough to be born and alive during an era of “free” mp3 downloads, but young enough to have missed Limewire – you’re golden. You don’t have to read this. You know, that we know, that you know what you’re supposed to do. Go on and do it.

As for the rest of you that are only familiar with YouTube, Spotify and other streaming platforms, well, you’re going to have to jump through a few hoops.

First of all, there’s the “I’ll buy it” option.

For whatever reason, artists still sell their music online even though everyone and their grandma stream. But, if for even a stranger reason you want to buy a song and use it as your ringtone, be prepared to spend at least about a dollar per track on places like iTunes or Google Play Music.

Or, you could go and join the dark side.

Now, we wouldn’t want to teach you how to do anything sketchy, but there are these little things called converters… You might want to figure out what those mean.
As for torrents, don’t bother. Windows is blocking the clients, using them on Mac is virtually impossible, and it’s just not worth the hassle.

It’s Not Working

Not to rain on your parade, but depending on what phone you use, just picking a song from your library and applying it as a ringtone will not work.

You’re going to have to do a bit of tinkering if that’s the case. Probably download an app or two, cut the song, shorten it, change the format, all that “fun” stuff.

But then again, you could just NOT do any of the things we’ve mentioned and just go to ZoneRingtones.com and get yourself a tune that’ll work instantly. Not sure why we didn’t lead with that… Anyway, back to the hard stuff.

It’s REALLY Not Working Because You’re An Apple User


Apple users, our condolences. Your will to live is about to wilt after we’re done with this.

Basically, Apple, in their own fashion, doesn’t allow you to do anything fun. You can’t use actually cool widgets, you can’t put icons wherever you want on the screen, and you can’t set a bloody ringtone unless you’re a senior developer with 20 years of experience.

That last thing was probably a bit of an overkill, but truth be told, changing your ringtone from a standard to a custom one is a pain in the A to the S to the S.

First of all, you are actually, physically unable to set a 3-minute song as a ringtone.

Any sound that can be used as a ringer on an iPhone has to be shorter than 40 seconds. This is an inconvenience, to say the least.

And second of all, unless you want to jailbreak your phone, there’s no way to set a custom ringtone without using iTunes.

And, you might think to yourself, oh, that’s not so hard, I know how to use iTunes.

And we say to you, my friend, you are in for a treat.

Let’s say you found the perfect song on YouTube. You go through the process of downloading it and adding it to your iTunes library.

The first thing you notice is that there’s no “Ringtones” tab in your library. No problem, you think, I’ll just create a new playlist and call it Ringtones or something.

Nope! You can’t do that either.

What you’ll need to look for is “Tones” in the left sidebar of your iTunes. If you don’t see it, go to Preferences\General and check the box that says “Show Tones in the Library”.

Now, once you find your way there, iTunes will kindly inform you that if you want to add files to this particular playlist, you’ll first have to change their format and shorten them to 40 seconds.

But wait! There’s more!

Even after all of this, there’s no guarantee that your new ringtone will appear in the Tones section. It won’t recognize MP3, AAC, WAV or even FLAC as a supported format.

Nope, you need to use M4R.

So, basically, after all that work you did, you also have to download an app or a program to help you convert your shortened 40-second snippet of a song into an M4R.

Thanks, Apple!

Final Verdict – Why Is It So Hard And Should You Even Bother With A Ringtone?


To be fair – we don’t know why is it so hard. Actually, we do, but it’s not okay for us to call anyone any names, so let’s leave it at that.

But should you bother? Well, yeah. It’s like putting a sticker on a laptop to showcase your personality, only this thing is not obnoxious and actually makes sense. So, definitely, get yourself a custom ringtone!