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Do Ringtones Work The Same With Prepaid Phones?posted by Stuart on May 31st, 2009 - 10:37 am | Ringtones
If you have a prepaid cell phone that is ringtone-capable, you can download ringtones to it just as you would with a standard mobile service. Some prepaid service providers offer the option of purchasing custom ringtones as part of your calling plan. When that is the case, the company’s website may offer files for preview and download.
Many prepaid carriers require up-front, credit-card payment for each download, rather than adding a charge to your phone bill. Your service agreement or guide/manual may state whether that is the case.
How to Download a Ringtone To Your Prepaid Phone
You can find a number of sources online for downloading ringtones to your prepaid phone, each with a wide selection and pricing options. Check out the encyclopedia of ringtone sites for a comprehensive list. If you don’t have time to read the entire list, here is a shortlist of subscription and pay-per-download sites:
StreetTunes is a subscription service that allows 12 downloads for $9.99 per month, and their realtones and polytones categories are organized by genre: Alternative, Animal Sounds, Astral Tones, Baladas, Boleros, Broadway, Childrens, Christian, Christmas, Classical, Colombian Regional, Country, Dance, Egyptian Frog, Electronica, Folk, Fun Sounds, Funny Characters, Gospel, Hard Rock, Hip Hop, Holiday, Jazz, Latin, Metal, New & Hot, Pop, Punk, R&B, Rancheras, Rap, Reggae, School Tones, Sertanejo, Soundtracks, Special Effects, Top Hits, Unknown, Valentines, and World Music.
Snazzie.com is another $9.99 per month subscription service, specifically for finding ringtones for Nextel mobile phones. They have 33,000 ringtones with offerings for these models: i95, i205, i275, i530, i605, i710, i730, i760, i830, i836, i850, i860, i870, i930 and i960.
SendMe Mobile has a one of the largest libraries of ringtones featuring your favorite stars and characters, organized into twenty-two categories like Pop, Hip Hop, Latin and fight song ringtones. You can also search by carriers including T-Mobile ringtones, Verizon, Sprint, Boost, Cellular One and AT&T.
Transferring Ringtones To Prepaid Phones That Are Not Internet-Capable
One of the following methods may help you transfer ringtones to your prepaid phone if it is not internet-capable. These steps depend on your phone‚ model and/or computer’s capabilities, so they may require some trial and error.
- Many .mp3 or .mid files can be emailed directly to the cell phone and saved as a ringtone.
- You may be able to insert the phone’s SIM card into another internet-capable phone temporarily, download the desired ringtones, then place the card back into your phone.
- If your phone model includes the required Bluetooth files, you may be able to pair it with another person’s phone locally and transfer ringtone files via Bluetooth.
- If you’re using Media Manager software to transfer ringtone files from your computer, while copying a file to the phone’s ringtone folder, be sure to select the “advanced” option, and set it to 44 Hz and 128 Kbps. (The desired setting may differ according to phone model; check your particular model’s instructions to be sure.)
Ringtone File Formats
Your phone’s manual should include info on your particular model’s readable ringtone file format(s). If you are interested in converting existing sound files to a format that your phone can use, it can be tricky business! Here’s info on some of the formats currently in use:
- AAC: Many newer model phones like the iPhone and Sony Ericsson W810i support the “.m4a” AAC file format. In addition to the .m4a file format, the iPhone also supports the m4r format. The “.m4r” format is exactly the same as the “.m4a” format aside from having an “r” rather than an “a” in the extension.
- iMelody: New phones not using Nokia‚ Smart Message regularly use this format.
- KWS: The ringer format specifically for Kyocera phones.
- MID / MIDI: This is a common and popular ringtone sound format.
- MP3: The mp3 format is a very common on music players like iPods and Zunes. Many phones today also support ring tones that are mp3 format.
- Nokia / SCKL / OTT: Nokia Smart Messaging format. Many phones in addition to Nokia can also receive ring tones as a text message. Using ring tone tools to create these text messages eliminates the need for a data cable and allows anyone with a Nokia Smart Messaging format compatible phone to load their own ring tones.
- PDB: Palm database. Many PDA phones, like the Keyocera 6035 and the Handspring Treo, use this file format.
- PMD: co-created by Qualcomm and Japanese company Faith, this format can include a variety of different features like static graphics, animation, text, vibration and LED events, in addition to MIDI and sampled audio.
- QCP: this is the file format generated by the Purevoice software from Qualcomm.
- RTTTL: A popular ring tone text format.
- RTX: Similar to RTTTL with some advanced features, like different octaves that are not available with RTX format.
- SMAF: Yamaha music format that combines MIDI with instrument sound data (aka Module files). Filenames have the extension “MMF”.
“Create-Ringtone” for Windows and “Ringtone Converter” for Mac are examples of software that you can use to convert and add new ringtones to your mobile phone. Or, whenever you would like to turn your existing music and photo files into custom ringtones and graphics without having to purchase any software, Mobile17.com is a great place to do so online.