How to Create And Add Custom Ringtones On iPhone and Android

While both iPhone and Android come with a stack of ringtones for you to choose from, much of the fun lies in personalizing it with your own ringtones. Whether you are looking to create a great ringtone from a song, video, or recorded clip, this article will help you create and set custom ringtones on Android and iOS.

How to Create Custom Ringtones on iPhone

The GarageBand app from Apple offers one of the simplest ways to make a custom ringtone for iPhone. You don’t even need iTunes or a computer. All you need is access to the audio file you want to use as a ringtone. It could be a voice recording, a song snippet, or any other sound.

GarageBand does not allow you to import mp3, mp4, or other similar files directly into the app. The trick is to record something in the app, add the song file as looped audio, then remove the recorded sound before exporting the ringtone.

Let’s check the steps in detail:

  1. Begin by installing the GarageBand app on your iPhone. It’s approximately 1.5GB, so make sure you have sufficient storage space and Internet bandwidth.
  2. Open the GarageBand app and tap on the add (+) icon at the top.
Ringtone Android Iphone Import Song Garageband
  1. Select any instrument and tap on it. For this tutorial, we chose “Keyboard.”
Ringtone Android Iphone Select Instrument Garageband
  1. Tap the red circle to start recording randomly by tapping the keys.
  2. Tap the square button to stop recording.
Ringtone Android Iphone Record Garageband 2
  1. Tap on the Edit icon in the top-left corner.
Ringtone Android Iphone Edit Garageband
  1. Select the Loop icon from the editing options.
Ringtone Android Iphone Loop Garageband
  1. To insert your audio file, tap the “Files” tab and select “Browse items from the Files app.” Choose the desired song, making it appear in the Files tab.
  2. Tap and hold it to drag it to the Tracks view.
Ringtone Android Iphone Select File

Note: GarageBand allows you to import MP3, AIFF, WAV, CAF, Apple Loops, AAC, and MIDI files.

  1. Double-tap the audio file you recorded earlier and press the “Delete” button.
Ringtone Android Iphone Delete Audio Garageband
  1. To crop your sound file to 30 seconds in length, ensure that the song’s ending section is equal to or less than 30.
  2. Drag the song slider by holding its edges to the desired duration. Alternatively, you can split the song and keep only the required portion while removing the rest.
Ringtone Android Iphone Crop Garageband 2
  1. Drag the song to the far left; otherwise, the audio file will start with blank audio.
Ringtone Android Iphone Move Garagebandjpg

Tip: tap the green Play button to preview the song.

  1. Once you have the required portion of the song, tap on the small downward arrow in the upper-left corner and choose “My songs.”
Ringtone Android Iphone My Songs Garageband
  1. The song will appear in the GarageBand Recents folder. Touch and hold the song and select “Share.”
Ringtone Android Iphone Share File Garageband
  1. Tap on “Ringtone” from the list of options.
Ringtone Android Iphone Share As Garageband
  1. Type a name for the newly created ringtone and hit the “Export” button.
Ringtone Android Iphone Export Garageband

That’s all. In a few seconds, your ringtone will be ready. When the process is finished, a pop-up window will appear, allowing you to set the ringtone directly from the app.

For that, select “Use sound as -> Standard ringtone.” Tap on Ok if you want to set the ringtone later. Follow the instructions mentioned in the “Set custom ringtone section” below.

Ringtone Android Iphone Use Sound As Garageband

GarageBand may appear intimidating at first, but if you carefully follow the instructions, you will become an expert in creating ringtones for your iPhone in a matter of minutes.

In addition to GarageBand, you can create ringtones using the iTunes app on Windows and Mac. You can also use iTunes to transfer ringtones from a PC to your iPhone. Just drag the ringtone in the supported format into the “Songs” folder of iTunes and sync it with your iPhone.

Note: GarageBand is the best way to set custom ringtones on iPhone. If you want to use a ringtone downloaded from any website or app, add the ringtone in GarageBand and follow the same steps.

Important Tips for Using Custom Ringtones on iPhone

A few things to note while creating ringtones on iPhone:

  • Generally, iOS can only use .m4r files as ringtones. GarageBand will automatically convert them into the right format. But if you want to convert your audio file to the m4r format, there are many tools that do the job, such as zamzar.com and audio.online-convert.com.
  • Ringtones should be 30 seconds long.
  • You can convert .m4a to .m4r format by renaming the file extension.
  • The custom ringtone file must be saved in the Files app.

How to Trim a Ringtone on iPhone

Another way to create a custom ringtone on iPhone is to use the Ringtones Maker app.

  1. Add the video to the app, then tap “Clip” to trim the audio to the desired length.
  2. Tap “Make” and choose “GarageBand” from the list of available apps.
Ringtone Android Iphone Ringtone Maker Iphone
  1. The song will appear in the GarageBand app’s “Recents” section. Hold it and go to “Share → Ringtone → Export.”

Don’t be intimidated; the app provides step-by-step instructions for making ringtones. You can use this app to import sound from videos, upload files from your computer, and record audio.

How to Set a Custom Ringtone on iPhone

Set a Default Ringtone

Once you have created a ringtone using GarageBand, open “Settings → Sound and haptics → Ringtone.” You will find the custom ringtones at the top of the ringtones list. Tap on the one you want to make your default ringtone.

Ringtone Android Iphone Set Custom Ringtone

Set Ringtone for a Contact

  1. Open the contact in the Apple Contacts app.
  2. Tap on the “Edit” button at the top.
Ringtone Android Iphone Set Custom Ringtone Contact
  1. Scroll down and tap on the “Ringtone” field.
  2. Tap on the custom ringtone to assign it to the contact and hit the “Done” button.

Similarly, repeat the steps for other contacts.

Set a Custom Ringtone as an Alarm

  1. Open the Apple Clock app and tap on the Alarm with a tone you would like to change.
  2. Tap on “Sound.” The custom ringtones will show up.
  3. Tap on the custom ringtone you would like to use.
Ringtone Android Iphone Set Custom Ringtone Alarm

How to Create a Custom Ringtone on Android

In Android, everything is very simple. You only need to place the desired song file in the Ringtones folder. However, this will play the ringtone from the beginning of the song, then cut it off midway. To make a custom ringtone, use the Mp3 Cutter or Ringtone Maker app.

Do note that Android supports all the popular audio formats, such as MP3, m4a, WAV, and OGG format. The best practice is to stick with MP3 files. Use online converters like audio.online-convert.com to convert any audio file to mp3.

  1. Download and open the Mp3 Cutter and Ringtone Maker app on Android.
  2. Tap on the “Mp3 Cutter” button and select the song file you wish to use.
Ringtone Android Iphone Mp3 Convertor
  1. Select the required portion of the song by dragging the slider edges to trim the audio.
  2. Use the Play button at the bottom to preview the selection.
  3. To fine tune the selection, use the “+” and “-” icons on the time buttons. When done, press the checkmark icon at the top.
Ringtone Android Iphone Mp3 Convertor Trim
  1. Give your ringtone a name; select its format (MP3, WAV, Flac, Ogg,), bitrate, and volume; and tap “Convert.”
Ringtone Android Iphone Mp3 Convertor Change Name Format
  1. Once converted, the ringtone will be saved in the “Internal Storage -> [App Name]” folder, from where you can manually set it as a ringtone as shown below. The app also allows you to use the song as a ringtone, alarm tone, notification, or as a custom contact name.

Here are a few good examples of other ringtone-making apps on Android. The fundamental steps remain the same.

How to Set a Custom Ringtone on Android

Change the Custom Ringtone for Everyone

There are two ways to achieve this. The first is by using Sound Picker.

On many Android phones, you can directly pick the ringtone file stored on your phone using Sound Picker.

  1. Go to “Settings → Sound & vibration → Ringtone.”
Ringtone Android Iphone Custom Sound
  1. Tap on the add (+) icon. On Stock Android, tap on “My Sounds,” then hit the add (+) icon. Select the ringtone file.
Ringtone Android Iphone Custom Sound Add

If the first method doesn’t work, you will need to move the tone from the Downloads folder or any other folder to “Internal Storage → Ringtone folder.”

  1. Use any File Explorer app to access this folder.
Ringtone Android Iphone Custom Sound Folder
  1. Go to “Settings → Sound & vibration → Ringtone” to find the custom ringtone files.
  2. Tap on the the desired ringtone to set as the default.
Ringtone Android Iphone Custom Sound Folder View

Tip: if moving the audio file to the Ringtones folder does not result in it appearing in the Ringtones list, then move it to “Internal Storage → Android → Media → com.google.com.soundpicker.”

Set Custom Ringtone for Contacts

  1. Open the contact in the Contacts app and tap on the “Edit” option.
  2. Tap on the “Ringtones” field to reach the Ringtone picker screen.
Ringtone Android Iphone Custom Contact
  1. Tap on the add (+) icon to assign a custom ringtone. Alternatively, select the custom ringtone after moving it to the Ringtones folder as explained above.

Tip: on Stock Android, open the contact and tap on the three-dot icon. Choose “Set ringtone.”

Set Custom Ringtone for Alarm

  1. Open the Clock app and tap on the alarm you wish to change.
  2. Press the “Alarm sound” option and hit the Add new (+) button. On Samsung Galaxy phones, you may need to press the Ringtone button followed by the add (+) icon.
  3. Select the custom ringtone. You may wish to find out how to set Spotify songs as an alarm tone.
Ringtone Android Iphone Alarm Custom

How to Create Ringtones Using Online Tools

In addition to the methods described above, you can create custom ringtones for both Android and iPhone using online tools. Some cool ringtone maker websites include:

Below, we illustrate this method using d using one of the websites.

  1. Open Ringtone maker in your phone’s browser.
  2. Tap on the “Upload files” button.
  3. Choose the song to edit and wait for the audio file to upload.
Ringtone Android Iphone Online Tool Upload
  1. Adjust the ringtone’s length using the green sliders.

Note: be careful while dragging the slider on a phone with gesture navigation.

Ringtone Android Iphone Online Tool Trim
  1. Tap on “MP3” to create a ringtone for Android and “M4R” for iPhone.
  2. Hit the “Make ringtone” button.
Ringtone Android Iphone Online Tool Format
  1. Tap on the “Download” button. The ringtone will be saved to the Downloads folder. You can view it using any File Manager app on Android or the Files app on iPhone.
  2. To set this tone as a ringtone on Android, follow the steps described above. That is, either use the Sound Picker or move it to the Ringtones folder.

On iPhone, you will need to load the song in the GarageBand app and follow the other steps as shown in the method above.

How and Where to Download Ringtones for Free

You can download ringtones directly from various websites and apps if you don’t want to go through the hassle of creating your own ringtones.

Please exercise caution when downloading ringtones from third-party apps or websites, as these websites pose a risk of malware and security issues. Try to download from trusted sources only.

Here are some websites where you can get ringtones:

Download the ringtone (MP3 format for Android and m4r for iPhone) from these sites to your phone’s Internal storage, and use the instructions described above to set as a ringtone.

If you want to get a little more creative, try the websites below to make a ringtone with your own name:

Apart from the websites, third-party ringtone apps are available for Android and iPhone.

How to Use Ringtones Downloaded from Zedge on Android

Zedge has one of the most extensive collections of ringtones on Android.

Open the app on your Android phone and scroll through the list of ringtones.

  1. To find the ringtone of your choice, use the search bar at the top.
  2. Tap the “Download” icon next to the ringtone you want to use.
  3. The app will offer a number of options: set ringtone, set notification, set alarm, set contact ringtone, and save to media folder. Choose the one you prefer.

If you go with the “Save to media folder”, you can set the ringtone by following the instructions for custom ringtones even after uninstalling the Zedge app.  

Some other Android apps that have a large selection of ringtones are:

How to Set Ringtones on iPhone Using Tuunes App

There is no app on the iPhone that provides an unlimited number of free ringtones. There are several apps that offer a few free ringtones ranging from 10 to 20. And the rest are paid.

Let’s take a look at the steps to set ringtones using the Tuunes app.

  1. Open the app and tap on the ringtone you want to download.
  2. Press the “Set Tune” button, choose “Standard” and hit the “Yes” button.
  3. The file will download to your iPhone, and you will find it in the “On my iPhone → Tuunes” folder. However, as mentioned above, you cannot set the ringtone directly. Follow the same steps mentioned in the GarageBand section to set this downloaded tone as a ringtone.

Other iPhone apps that provide a large selection of ringtones are:

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do I make a song on YouTube to be my ringtone?

You will need to convert the the YouTube video to MP3, using an online creator such as YTMP3 and use the methods described above to set it as a ringtone. You can even extract the audio from a video file and use it to create a ringtone.

2. What’s the difference between a ringtone and caller tune?

A ringtone is what you hear when someone calls you, whereas the caller tune or hellotune is the music that the other person hears when they call you.

Read on to learn how you can use a custom notification tone on Android phone.