Windows Phone 7.5 brings a feature that really should have been available since the initial release – custom ringtones! After updating my phone last night and exploring many of its new features (more to come on that) I decided to create a few of my own.
According to the documentation on the Windows Phone site ringtones need to meet 4 criteria:
- MP3 of WMA format
- No more than 40 seconds long
- No more than 1 MB
The documentation goes on to say that you can create a ringtone in Zune by setting the file’s genre to “ringtone” and syncing it to the phone. Now I don’t know about your music library but I’m guessing that it’s similar to mine in that most of it fails both the second and third criteria so simply changing a file’s genre doesn’t cut it.
What I did to create my ringtones was load the desired tracks into audacity. In Audacity I isolated the sections that would become my ringtones and pasted them into new tracks. For an extra touch I added a 2-second fade out at the end of each one. I saved each file to a folder already monitored by Zune so it would discover them automatically. In Zune I updated the artist, album, and genre then copied them to the phone. The files were then immediately available for selection at the top of the ringtones list.
A few days after posting this I learned that the phone also supports contact specific ringtones. To set a ringtone for a contact just open that contact’s card and click the edit button. On the edit screen you’ll see a new ringtone option listed under name. I haven’t set any ringtones this way yet but I was happy to find it as an option.