How to Add a Ringtone to iPhone Without iTunes

If you have an iPhone but don’t have iTunes, you may find setting the ringtone of your choice challenging. Apple provides a selection of preset songs, but what if you want to use your favorite song?

How to Add a Ringtone to iPhone Without iTunes

Unfortunately, Apple has made things a little tricky by stipulating that you pay and download the song from iTunes to use it as a ringtone. But there are ways around this.

In this article, we’ll discuss how to add a ringtone to your iPhone without using iTunes.

What You’ll Need

Before we dive into adding your ringtone, there are a few things you will need to do first.

  • The song you want to set as your ringtone will need to be downloaded onto your phone and saved in your iPhone Music Library. Alternatively, you can import and save the song in your Apple Files. Be sure to do this. Otherwise, the steps that follow won’t work.
  • You will also need to have the GarageBand app installed on your iPhone. GarageBand is an app designed for use on Apple devices such as iPhones, iPads, and Mac computers and allows users to create podcasts and music files. It usually comes as a native app, but you can download it free from the app store if you don’t have it.

Once you’ve added your chosen song to your device and installed GarageBand, we can get started.

To get around using iTunes to create your ringtone, you will first need to custom-create a song before setting it as your ringtone.

Creating Your New Ringtone on Your iPhone

  1. Launch the GarageBand app.
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  2. Next, open the Tracks section, swipe until you find Drums, tap on Smart Drums, and finally select the View button to take you to the edit section. Apple depicts this button as a series of longer and shorter lines.
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  3. Next, you will need to tap on the Loop icon at the top of the screen. This button allows you to browse for your song.
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  4. Choose the Files tab and find the song you want to use. Once you have located the song, press down on it for a few seconds, and it will import. If you don’t see the song you’re looking for, click the Browse items from the Files app button to search for it.
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  5. Press the Play button to run through the track to see where you want the song to begin playing when your phone rings. At the top of the editing screen, you will see what looks like a ruler with a vertical slider pin attached to it. Slide this pin to the point where you want the ringtone to start.
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  6. When you are happy with where the pin is placed, double-click the song. A selection of options will pop up. Choose Split. Next, drag the icon with the scissors down to snip your song at your selected point.
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  7. Now, double-tap the portion of the song you don’t want to keep. A menu will pop up. Select Delete to remove it from the workspace.
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  8. Next, tap the downward-facing arrow in the top left corner of the screen. Then, from the menu, choose My Songs.
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  9. Tap and hold down on the music project and choose Share. From the menu, select Ringtone followed by Continue. Next, name the song. Then, select Export. This will save your new ringtone.
  10. An option will then come up to Use sound as. If you click it, it will allow you to set the song as your ringtone or assign it to a contact. Alternatively, tap OK to save the ringtone so you can set it yourself manually at a later stage.

It is important to note that when you export the song, your iPhone automatically trims the song to a length of 30 seconds. Therefore, if you only want a snippet of the song to play (less than 30 seconds), you will need to cut it from both sides. Doing this allows you to create the segment you want. To do this, repeat steps 5 to 7.

Setting Your Custom Song as a Ringtone on Your iPhone Without using iTunes

If you selected OK and just saved the song, and you now want to set it as your ringtone, these are the steps to follow:

  1. Open your iPhone and navigate to Settings (the little grey gear icon).
  2. Then choose Sounds & Haptics.
  3. From this menu, choose Ringtone. A list of all the ringtones available will dropdown. Your newly created ringtone should appear at the top of this list.
  4. Tap the song to set it as your ringtone.

Frequently Asked Questions

This section includes more answers to your questions about iPhone ringtones.

Can I add a voice memo as a ringtone on iPhone?

Yes! You may remember the days of recording songs as voice memos and setting your favorite songs as your ringtone. Although Apple has made this process more difficult, you can still assign a voice memo to your ringtone. Here’s what you need to do:

1. Record your voice memo. Tap on the three dots under the recording you’d like to use.

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2. Select Save to Files.

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3. Select the file location and tap Save.

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Now, you can follow the same steps above and upload the file to GarageBand to set your new ringtone.

iPhone Ringtone Created and Set

Creating and setting a new ringtone on your iPhone is challenging if you don’t use iTunes. But if you follow the steps above, you’ll hear your favorite song whenever your phone rings.

The only thing you’ll need to worry about is what song you want to hear!

Have you created and set a ringtone on your iPhone without using iTunes? Did you use any of the tips in this guide? Let us know in the comments section below.


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