On iOS, downloading and creating a custom ringtone is not a simple task, especially for new users. There are no full-fledged apps that can make the process as easy and straightforward as it is on an Android phone.
Although you can find a ton of “iPhone ringtone” apps on the App Store, none of them can actually export ringtones to your library due to Apple’s restrictions. Usually, these apps will ask you to sync ringtones via File Sharing on iTunes.
If you don’t like the idea of using iTunes, it’s still possible to turn a song into a ringtone or download your favorite ringtones from the Internet and use on your iPhone. You just need the right tools. Keep reading as I’ll show you real best iPhone ringtone apps.
Part 1: The GarageBand App
Note: There are some ringtone maker and downloader apps available on the App Store, which let you download tons of cool ringtones or create your own from your music library. However, they only can store the ringtones in their local storage. You’ll have to use iTunes to get the ringtone files via the File Sharing feature and sync them with your iPhone.
These apps will be covered in the next part. Now, I’ll show you the app that you can use to create a custom ringtone from a song, and set it as your iPhone ringtone, without using a computer.
It’s GarageBand, a music maker app made by Apple for iOS devices and Mac. As far as I know, it’s the only app that has the ability to make ringtones on iPhone and add them directly to the Ringtone selection section.
In iOS 11, the My Songs browser in GarageBand works together with the Files app, allowing you to create ringtones not only from the music library but also from songs that are saved in other apps or cloud services.
Make sure you have your songs in your music library or music/ringtone files that can be accessed by the Files app before getting started. Now, let’s make a new custom ringtone for your iPhone.
STEP 1: Get started with Garageband
Launch GarageBand, tap Recents, then tap the Plus button on the top-right corner. There, select AUDIO RECORDER from the Instruments screen.
Tap on the Tracks icon to bring up the Tracks view. Tap on the Metronome icon to disable it. Look at the picture below to know which icons they are. Disabling Metronome will prevent count-in sounds from occurring during playback.
STEP 2: Import your tracks
By default, the timeline has 8 bars or 16 seconds in length. You can change the total duration by tapping the small + button on the ruler. Then select “Section A” and turn on the “Automatic” option. This will allow you to import the whole song.
Now you can import the songs. Tap on the Loop-shaped icon the upper-right corner. The screen will prompt you to select the files. You can select from music library or from other places in the Files app.
You can select the Music tab to browse songs in your music library. Here I select “Audio Files” and import files from the Files app. Tap on a song to preview it. When you find the one you want, tap and hold it, drag it a little. The song browser will dismiss and you’re able to drop the song into the tracks. Once you’ve dropped the file, GarageBand will start importing it.
[ See Also: How to Download Files & Documents to iPhone and iPad ]
STEP 3: Trim the music track
To clip music track, adjust the slider on both sides to crop the portion of the song you want to keep. Ringtones have a maximum duration of 30 seconds, so make sure the music track has up to 15 bars in length. Eventually, drag the finished portion to the beginning of the track.
Tap the Play icon at the top bar to preview the song. When you’re satisfied with the editing, tap on the arrow-down icon on the top left corner, then choose My Songs. This will instantly save the current track.
STEP 4: Save Ringtone
Find your song in the Recents tray. Tap, hold and release it to reveal contextual menu options. Tap “Share”.
The app will show you three format options to share the song. Tap “Ringtone” to create a custom ringtone. Name the ringtone whatever you want then tap “Export”. After the process finish, it will say Ringtone Export Successful.
Now you can go to the Settings app, navigate to Sounds & Haptics > Ringtone. Your exported ringtone will appear at the top of the list for you to select.
ADDITION: Delete exported ringtones
If you don’t want to keep the custom ringtones, you can delete them from the GarageBand app. Select Share again, tap on Ringtone. This time, rather than tapping the Export button, tap on “Your Ringtones”. You’ll find all the custom ringtones you have exported from GarageBand, now swipe to delete the ones you want.
Part 2: Ringtone apps on the App Store
As of now, the ability to export ringtones could only be achieved by using GarageBand. Ringtone apps on the App Store allow you to download, create ringtones but they require iTunes to sync tones with your iPhone eventually.
If these apps have an option to share tones with cloud services or send files to other apps like Documents, you would be able to make use of GarageBand. But I’ve sifted through so many apps and couldn’t find one that supports these features.
If you are willing to use iTunes, here are the ringtones apps that are worthy of consideration.
#1 ZEDGE Ringtones
ZEDGE Ringtones is a place to browse and download thousands of ready ringtones for free. You can find sound effects and ringtones from your favorite games and shows, like Barney Stinson’s ringtone from How I Met Your Mother.
#2 Ringtones for iPhone
Ringtones for iPhone provides three options to add new ringtones to your iPhone. You can trim existing songs in your music library using the app’s editor. Want cool pre-made ringtones? This app has got you covered with tons of great tones. You can also choose to record your voice or nature sounds and then use this app to make a personal ringtone as well.
#3 Ringtones for Me
Ringtones for Me offer a wide selection of ringtones, text tones, voicemail tones, and alerts. It offers the same features as Ringtones for iPhone but has many other categories to choose from.
#4 Ringtone Designer 2.0
Ringtone Designer 2.0 is dedicated to helping you create custom ringtones, text tones and alerts from sounds in your music library. You can easily adjust the length of the portion you want to keep, then apply some fade in or fade out effects, and you’re good to go.
How to add ringtones from these apps to your iPhone using iTunes
1) Save ringtones using one of the apps above. In this example, I use ZEDGE Ringtones.
2) Connect your iPhone to your computer and open iTunes.
3) Select your iPhone in the upper left part of iTunes, then select File Sharing in the sidebar. Now select your app (ZEDGE Ringtones in my case) from the list. All your saved ringtone files will show up in the Documents section.
4) Drag your ringtones to your desktop.
5) Select Tones under “On My Device”. Then click and drag your saved ringtones on the desktop back into iTunes.
6) Click Sync. Wait for iTunes to sync the ringtones. When it finishes, hit Done.
7) Your ringtones are ready to use.