Here’s how you can set a song as a ringtone on iPhone

iPhones are great devices when it comes to looks, features, cameras and more. However, when it comes to ringtones, it is a bit of disappointment. Although there are several ringtones to select from, they are the same ones available to everyone else. There is no official way to customize a ringtone, but you can always pay Apple to get a custom ringtone. However, there is a trick that can help you set a song as ringtone on the iPhone without paying anything.

set a song as ringtone on iPhone

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A complex process

Having the freedom to set anything as a ringtone is one of the best ways to personalize your phone. Although Apple charges you to select a custom ringtone, you can use a trick to set a song as a ringtone on iPhone. This process is completely free, but you will have to use iTunes for it.

If you are wondering why you can’t create a ringtone on your iPhone, then I am sorry to say that there is no trick for that because Apple does not want to allow it. Apple does not allow apps to write ringtones into the correct folder. If the creators of any app claims that it will help you create a custom ringtone on the iPhone, then they are lying.

Even with iTunes, the process to set a song as a ringtone on an iPhone is quite complex, indicating the lengths Apple has gone to discourage such things. Understanding why Apple doesn’t want this is simple. The company wants to make money by selling you your favorite ringtone.

As said above, the process to set a song as a ringtone is not simple and straightforward. It involves quite a few steps, including copying files and changing the extension name to convert your favorite song into a special file format. Thereafter, you will have to sync it with your iPhone.

Once you master the trick, you can easily apply it to set custom ringtones for separate contacts.

How to set a song as a ringtone on iPhone

Here are the steps to set a song as a ringtone on the iPhone. The process to do so starts with a Mac or Windows PC. In our example, we are taking a 30-second portion of a song to be set as the ringtone. Here are the steps:

  1. Open iTunes on your computer. Make sure you are running the latest version and that it syncs properly with your phone. If iTunes is not updated, then update it before starting the process.
  2. Select a song from the iTunes music library that you want to turn into a ringtone.
  3. Choose the portion of the song that you want as a ringtone. It could be any part of the song, including the beginning, end or any other section. Note down the start and end time of the selected portion as you will need it later.
  4. Right-click on the song; from the drop-down menu, select “Song Info.”
  5. Click on the Options tab in the Song Info dialog box.
  6. Now enter the start and end time that you noted in the third step in the start and stop fields. Make sure that the start and stop fields are checked. Click “OK” after you’re done.
  7. Click the File menu and select “Convert” to convert it to the AAC version. After the conversion is complete, the new version of the song will appear in the iTunes music library immediately below the original version you selected earlier.
  8. Select the new AAC version of the song and copy it to a location in a folder where you can easily access it, such as the desktop. Once you have copied the file, you will no longer need the new AAC version of the audio file that you created. Thus, you can delete it.

Making the file ready for ringtone

In the above steps, you created a file in a specific file format. Now here are the steps to make this file ready to become a ringtone.

  1. Go to the folder where you copied the file and click the View tab at the top of the folder.
  2. Click the check box for the File name extensions. If you are using a Mac, click the Finder menu and then select “Preferences.” Now in the Finder Preferences, select “Show all filename extensions.”
  3. Click on the song file, and then after a second, click on it again so that you can edit the filename. Now click the filename extension, and change it to M4R from M4A, and then hit Enter. You may be asked to confirm to change.

That’s it! You now have the audio file that you can set as a ringtone on your iPhone. All you have to do now is sync this file with your iPhone and then set it as a ringtone like you normally do. Hopefully, you will now be able to set a song as a ringtone on your iPhone.

There’s one more thing. The original song on iTunes is still set to play for only 30 seconds. Thus, you will have to correct that as well. To do so, right-click on the track and select “Song Info.” Now on the Options tab, clear the checkmarks for the start and stop time and then click “OK” to save the changes.

You can also refer to the video below:



About the Author

Aman Jain
Aman is MBA (Finance) with an experience on both Marketing and Finance side. He has worked as a Risk Analyst for AIR Worldwide, and is currently leading VeRa FinServ, a Financial Research firm. Favorite pastimes include watching science fiction movies, reviewing tech gadgets, playing PC games and cricket. - Email him at amanjain@valuewalk.com