Adding third-party ringtones to iPhone
Ask iLounge offers readers the opportunity to get answers to their iPod-, iPhone-, iPad-, iTunes-, or Apple TV-related questions from a member of the iLounge editorial team. We'll answer several questions here each week, and of course, you can always get help with more immediate concerns from the iLounge Discussion Forums. Submit your questions for consideration using our Ask iLounge Submit Form. We reserve the right to edit questions for grammar, spelling, and length.
Q: I recently purchased the Apple iPhone, and this is the first Apple product that I’ve bought. My quetion is how can I upload ringtones on the iPhone? I downloaded ringtones from one website but they won’t upload?
A: Ringtones with the iPhone are a slightly tricky issue right now, as Apple has only recently changed their position on user-created ringtones.
With the introduction of user-installable ringtones this past September, originally only tracks purchased from the iTunes Store could be turned into ringtones, and then at an additional cost of $0.99 per ringtone. Although several third-party workarounds were available to allow user-created ringtones to be placed on the iPhone, various iTunes and iPhone software updates continued to block this capability.
As of iTunes 7.5 and the iPhone v1.1.2 firmware, Apple has now opened up the ability to add third-party ringtones to the iPhone, and has in fact provided a GarageBand update for Mac users that now directly supports sending audio tracks from GarageBand to iTunes to be used as an ringtone. GarageBand ‘08 is part of the iLife ‘08 suite, which is bundled with all new Macs purchased after August 2007.
Ringtones are normally synchronized through iTunes itself, although there are also a number of third-party tools available to assist with this process. You can import a ringtone file into iTunes in much the same way as you would any other media track—simply drag it to the iTunes window, or use the File, Add to Library menu option.
Once added to iTunes, ringtones will appear under the “Ringtones” category in the Source list on the left-hand side of the iTunes window. This category normally only appears once you have added at least one ringtone to your iTunes library, but can also be enabled/disabled via your iTunes Preferences.
Ringtones contained in your iTunes library are selected for synchronization to the iPhone in much the same way as any media other content. You can find these settings on the “Ringtones” tab in your iPhone sync preferences in iTunes:
Note that third-party ringtones from other sources may not import into iTunes properly. The first thing you should check when trying to do this is that the file in question has a “.M4R” extension—if not, rename the file with the proper extension and try importing it again. If that still doesn’t work, then you may need to look to a third-party software tool to assist you in transferring these ringtones either into iTunes, or directly to your iPhone itself. Two popular tools for Mac users are iToner (http://www.ambrosiasw.com, $15, trial available) and MakeiPhoneRingTone (http://www.rogueamoeba.com/freebies/, free). Windows users can check out iPhoneRingToneMaker (http://www.iphoneringtonemaker.com/, $15, trial available). Note that these applications allow the creation of ringtones in addition to providing the ability to transfer these ringtones into your iTunes library or directly onto your iPod.
If you’re a Mac user, be sure to also check out our Ten Step Guide to iPhone Custom Ringtones in GarageBand ‘08.
- Will removing a credit card from Safari also remove it from Apple Pay?
- Can I mute Handoff calls coming into my Mac from my iPhone?
- How do I keep my iPhone calls from ringing on my Mac?
- Why doesn’t Traffic show up on my Today Notifications Screen?
- Why doesn’t my iPhone reconnect to Wi-Fi after I turn it on?
- Why can’t I see the iPad-style landscape view on my iPhone 6 Plus?
- Honeywell debuts Lyric T5 HomeKit-enabled smart thermostat
- Executives talk Apple Music successes and failures
- Apple Q4 earnings call set for October 27
- Sonos speakers available on Apple’s online store today, in Apple Stores next month
- Apple lacks lobbying power in fight with EU
- Apple to offer ‘Spoken Editions’ of written content from top publishers
- Apple working to turn HealthKit into diagnosis tool
- Hackers expose security flaw in iOS 10’s local backups
- Apple releases iOS 10.0.2 to fix headphone controls, iCloud Photo Library
- Report: Apple’s Siri home hub has reached the prototype stage
- 808 Audio XS Sport Rugged Wireless Speaker
- Mass Fidelity Core Bluetooth Speaker
- Thought Out Simplex Tablet iPad Stand
- SmartX Galaxy ZEGA Starter Kit
- Apple iPhone 7 Plus Leather Case
- Apple Watch Series 2
- iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus
- Twelve South HiRise 2 for iPhone + iPad
- Nomad Pod Pro for iPhone and Apple Watch
- Sevenhugs hugOne Sleep Monitoring System
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of watchOS 3
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of tvOS 10
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 10
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 Photos gets Advanced Computer Vision
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 Music app delivers ‘clarity and simplicity’
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 Maps gets a major redesign
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 shakes up the user experience
- Inside the betas: watchOS 3 promises a real speed boost
- Inside the betas: A sneak peek at what’s new in tvOS 10
- Filling the Gap: A look at third-party HomeKit apps