No Custom Ringtones in Windows Phone 7?

People love to customize their phone, be it their wallpapers or ringtones. That’s why we are a bit surprised to hear that early reports say you cannot add a custom ringtone in Windows Phone 7. Some of the AT&T models such as the HTC Surround have custom ringtones added by HTC. When it comes to user installable ringtones, there appears to be no way to do it. Let’s hope there is an easy enough work around, because people need their Imperial March ringtones pronto.

Windows Phone 7 ringtones

Pocketnow via Engadget


  1. Techblogger says

    Well, that’s kinda old school of them. Even dumb phones allow custom ring tones. Come on MS, I’m your biggest fan but you’re over cooking my grits with this news.

  2. Christopher Meinck says

    I’m thinking someone will find an easy enough workaround. That said, not quite sure why they would omit a feature that’s pretty important to end users.

  3. Fred says

    It’s most likely a concession to the mobile carriers. They can make money with paid ringtone downloads. Unfortunately, mobile carriers are sometimes the tail that wags the dog. As Windows Phone 7 grows in popularity, Microsoft can push back on carriers over these details.

  4. Christopher Meinck says

    Bloatware is taking it’s toll on Android right now and end users suffer. From what I understand, it’s easy enough to remove any carrier apps on WP7, which is a big plus. It’s not acceptable to allow carriers to profit from ringtones. I recognize that Microsoft needs the carriers now, but pleasing carriers can be a rocky road, especially for users.

    That being said, I’d venture to guess that some developer comes up with a workaround.

    No way I’m paying a carrier for a ringtone.

  5. Techblogger says

    You’re right Christopher Meinek. The other thing is, for at least two phones I’ve owned, I use the same ring tone. I’m used to it and know what it sounds like. If carriers want to sell ringtones, I have no problem with that. Some people like paying for the convenience. Beyond that, this is so throwback to the days when AT&T / Cingular didn’t drop calls.

  6. Sandy M says

    It is completely bizarre that Windows Phone 7 does not allow you to add custom ringtones.

    There is no technical barrier for this. It is such a simple thing to implement. Obviously Microsoft decided (for whatever reason) that it did not want to implement it.

    The simplest / cheapest feature phones all allow custom ringtones. Windows Phone 7 must be the only one that doesn’t allow it.

    I have a completely crazy ringtone on my current phone, and get a kick to see others’ reaction when the phone rings. How sad that Microsoft has taken this away. What else doesn’t Windows Phone 7 do?

  7. goose says

    Can’t believe a phone that is this smart is not able to download a simple ringtone. Also not able to bluetooth from another phone. If I was informed of this at the time of purchase, I would have bought an I-Phone.

  8. cmg417 says

    I cannot believe that Microsoft put out this phone with the one single feature that EVERYONE wants and uses – customizable ringtones! Okay, so I had the Samsung Vibrant and switched to the HTC HD7 – WHY??? First, the Windows phone apps market is as lame as they come – there is hardly anything there that I want or would use. Second, no cut and paste? Really? On a Windows OS?? How can that be? I LOVE the phone, but Microsoft dropped the ball on this one. If they want to compete, they’d better do two things immediately – contract some heavy duty apps developers, and add the ability to create personal ringtones. Otherwise, I’m going back to the Vibrant and to Android.

  9. Tech101 says

    I believe the reason was to keep up with shipping dates they couldn`t add this feature. I hope they add a ringtone feature as I like having a funny ringtone. I luv the windows phone and don`t currently care for ringtones but I realise when I get used to the apps and stuff I am going to want to change it.

  10. What the hell says

    Raging unbelievably hard on this one. I bought my HTC Surround because I didn’t think such a fundamental aspect to a phone will be neglected. Turns out I was wrong, very wrong.

    Fuck you, Microsoft. I love your products, I am a strong supporter of Windows, but to release something as fucking useless as the current Windows Phone 7 is utterly unacceptable by my accounts. Had I known that my phone would be as shitty as it is, I would’ve gone back to the dumb phones and bought a Sony Ericsson.

  11. david says

    yea I’m like every one Else out there ..we like to custom our phones wit wall paper .pics. an o wait ring tones ..not on the windows 7 phone …some of the apps are fun .but come on some of them are jus plain one told me that the phone does not support any ring tones but other than the ones already on the phone …whats the point of haven a 600.00 dollar phone if u cant even get a simple damn ring tones i even went to the at&t site to bye the damn thing there site don’t even support the phone …hello anyone know what there doing out there in ms world….how many ppl have to bitch about this before u guys do some thing about it

  12. Matthias says

    “No way I’m paying a carrier for a ringtone.”

    your damn right, i used to love the fact that i could take a sample from a guns and roses song and use it as my tone uhh 5 years ago on a now antique Samsung phone. now in 2011 you have to settle for tones that sound like midi tones / polyphonic tones from the early 90’s… come on microsoft!

    My question is how many people get home with this phone, figure out they cant load up their favorite song as a ringtone, and take WP7 strait back to the store for an iPhone or an Android phone…? I know everybody I have told about WP7 lacking this simple but important (and expected) feature has replied with “Wow, thats kind of a dealer breaker…” or “wow, thats kinda BS… I mean wtf? even crap phones have ringtones…”

    Honestly I want to know… is microsoft looking forward to missing out on sales over the lack of such a simple and expected feature? are they just trying to be different? are they trying to piss people off?! because yeah, im kinda pissed about the “no custom ring tones” it ALMOST makes me want to take the phone back and get an android phone… still up in the air as to what im going to do. If i didnt hate apple so much i would get an iPhone, but watch out microsoft, android is going to be the weapon of choice to consumers who cant stand apple, but will not deal with a phone sounds like its from 1997 when it rings…

    Take head to this message, fix this detail soon! or dont.. screw it, its your choice… but if you do not fix this detail YOU ARE GOING TO LOSE OUT ON A LARGE NUMBER OF SALES

    you pissed a lot of microsoft fans off… I have always been a microsoft fan and i was holding out on buying an Android phone because i wanted to buy a WP7 phone so bad!!! i got it home and was absolutely crushed when I discovered I couldnt load up my favorite ringtones =( so PLEASE fix this with your very next update and make all your lifetime windows / microsoft fans (including me) very very… Please???

  13. sash says

    I bought an HTC touch pro 2. I did not know it has fucking shit windows bloatware crap on it. Microsoft are quite simply an insular bunch of morons. To produce software which is totally illogical, with a pathetically confusing user interface. I have been using MS products since 1986, but I am now totally convinced that MS develop products with absolutely NO reference or care about their potential customers. As for HTC to choose windows mobile as an operating system, they franly must have a strong desire to lose clients snd kill what little support they have among users. Even two different MS technicians have failed to figure out how to set up my email. I intend to smash the phone and leave it in the reception of my company so that I can warn as many people as possible about the money they will waste by getting anything made by Microsoft. As for my firm, our board have decided to drop ALL mircosoft products and install linux, the pain of learning the new software will be softened because it is free. Over the years I have steadily grown to hate microsoft products, their greedy corporate culture, their gouging inflexible marketing policies, their total arrogance and their non existent service. I urge all microsoft users to follow our example, switch to linux and together we will slay the greedy corporate beast, that billions hate so much. They are now just an inward looking cult which I now believe, think they rule the world.

    • Matthias says

      Well, I actually love my samsung focus with WP7 – BUT i am kinda pissed off at Microsoft for launching an incomplete OS, lacking features expected on ANY smartphone such as copy / paste, personal ringtones, the fact that the samsung focus has wifi tethering ability yet we the consumer have to hack the phone to use that feature… Since it has taken Microsoft 5~6 months to release an update that we are STILL waiting for to fix these missing features that should have been available at the launch of the OS… i hacked my WP7 and now can install my own ringtones, i am working on copy / paste feature, and i hacked my phone so i can now use wifi tethering, and i am working on making the home screen usable in landscape mode, so when i turn the phone on its side all the tiles rotate one quarter of a turn and then i can scroll left and right while holding the phone on its side =D and im trying to get zune to work in landscape mode also, im pissed off that i have to turn the phone back to the upright position after watching a movie / video and then back on its side to watch another video.. because the only option for watching videos is in landscape mode… WHY NOT MAKE THE REST OF ZUNE WORK IN LANDSCAPE!? well, i should have this issue fixed soon enough… and all this in less then a week… yet Microsoft has a team of highly educated, highly trained, highly paid professionals and it is taking them months to release a much needed update to activate the full potential of this could be amazing OS… and ME!? im just some nerd who works in a kitchen as a cook making $12/hr… and i have gotten this phone closer to being perfect in less then a week! WTF MICROSOFT!? the people that work for Microsoft must be jack-off all day instead of actually working on getting this OS update released!! they should fire their entire team and higher me… im seriously disappointed…

  14. david says

    hay Matthias .i was wondering if u could help me out to hack my wp7 LG quantum ..for ring tones wiifi hot spots an tethering …please help David.

  15. tony619 says

    Why???? I was really exited when I was on my way to the at&t store to purchase the HTC surround windows 7, when I got home I liked what it was capable of doing like the pin to start feature which I thought was pretty cool, but then I said to my self that adding a nice ringtone will make my phone pimp. And there it was the least expected bullshit! No custom ringtones! I was so pist that a phone this advanced from a computer company would leave this out! I hope the next marketplace update will be the ability to customize your own ringtones not that cheesy old Nokia ringtones!

  16. Elliott Mcgaskin says

    i think this is some bullshit if i would have known about this ringtone shit i would have just gotten the damn G2 need to hurry and update this mess are i am going to get me a android phone ASAP cuz this is so bullshit wtf was they think they really got ppl pissed about this stupid shit..

  17. says

    For this concerned yes you can add ringtones, if you really want them as I wanted them. Chevronwp has everything you need and need to know about installing ringtones. It works and I have installed many ringtones flawlessly and now I’m very happy with my wp7, I can wait for the update now, all I really wanted and couldn’t wait for was ringtones.

    • shana c. says

      Chevron will not work on my HTC wp7 phone. I really hate this a $500 dollar phone that sounds like a ice cream truck . I think they discon. Chevron

  18. matthias2986 says

    Just do your homework guys, its very possible to install custom ringtones, I will try to find a good guide on how-to, or just write one on here. Good Luck =D

  19. Jacquitha says


  20. don says

    wow their are so many people pissed what the hell are you thinking microsoft wtf if i had know about the ringtones i would have went with a hacked iphone 4 instead of a hd7 the apps will take time i know but as was said before i could use custom ringtones 10 years ago but not on my top o the line wp7 fix this now or i think you will see your phones on ebay real quick

  21. dzk808 says

    hahaha microsoft was fucking dumb! I used custom ringtones on my motorola cheap razor fone lol. Now i have a WINDOWS PHONE i cant use! I would have bought an iphone instead if I knew this as well they should sell these phones for cheaper!

  22. matthias says

    I’m starting yo get real aggravated about my Samsung focus restarting itself like 17 times a day and everytime it restarts itself it comes back in with none of my user settings and I have to restart it again to remedy it, BUT if you don’t notice when it restarts itself (ohh, say because your at work and its in your pocket!!) the screen does not time out!!! Meaning it chews the hell out of your batt, then you get out of work and surprise! DEAD BATTERY! SWEET! >_<

    • matthias says

      I think this is some sort of memory issue since I decided to use the MICRO SD expansion option, apparently we the consumers are not supposed to use the memory slot yet??? WTF?!? why would they release such a crippled version of wp7?? At least they could have waited to release the phones after they got some of these minor but kind of deal breaking issues! And if they would have built the os like A NORMAL PERSON WOULD!! WE WOULD BE ABLE TO HOT SWAP MICRO SD CARDS, YOU KNOW, LIKE A NORMAL PHONE!! I love and hate this OS… I just hope I can stick it out before I change my mind and go get that Android phone I had my eye on! >_<

  23. matthias says

    This goes out to all looking to install custom ringtones, jump on google and search for ChevronWP7 and read, read read read, i cant explain it half as well as some of the articles relating to this subject. You will need to send a certificate to your phones email address, the certificate makes WP7 think that ChevronWP7 is a certified application. The certificate can be tough to find so if you need that just ask and i will email it to you no problem. good luck! =D

  24. jimmy says

    could u send me the certificate so maybe i can get my wife some ringtones without having to spend a fortune

  25. brenno1023 says

    WP7 is a beautiful os, it is sleek, fast, simple and easy to figure out, with some cool features that both android and iOS could do well taking notes from, but its shortcomings are small but inexcusably vital. I cant believe the browser doesnt have flash or landscape address bar; that i cant customise my ringtone or get turn-by-turn navigation with the maps app. Microsoft shouldnt have rushed this… But hopefully as apple did with their rushed ipad, MS will eventually get this right with the proper software features we can expect from a premium smartphone with a premium operating system. Get it together MS! We can only wait so long!

  26. don says

    ok this is plain dumbass i gave up my iphone for what i thought was a better phone hd7 no apps ok i can wait but what the hell are you thinking microsoft no custom ring tones the crap preloaded was old when i was using my startac.for all you young kids a very small flip phone from the 90s ill give ya a few more weeks but i think your gonna find alot of w7 phones on ebay if ya dont fix this

  27. Peter says

    It’s not just ringtones. Suddenly we don’t have access to the file system on a Windows platform. With my old HTC WM6 phone, yes it lacked the slickness of WP7, but just plug it into my PC and I can move files around between the two, including into ‘My Ringtones’. Ditto Office documents, photos etc. I expect to be able to do that with Windows, on my PC, laptop, netbook – and smartphone. But not any more, apparently. This is a big change of direction on the part of MS, in terms of its ‘target demographic’ for Windows Phones. WM7 is purely consumer oriented, – a toy, in other words – with no provisions for those of us who actually want to use these things seriously. Unless we go down the jailbreak etc route. There is even no legitimate way for me as a developer to create an application for my company and load it on our phones without going through the MS app store. Just crazy.

  28. jeff says

    I called SPRINT, HTC, and MICROSOFT today and complained about the same items everyone else is disgusted with. It is very similar to when the DOJ busted them for making their product so proprietary no other browsers, media, etc would work. I think if everyone continues to call and threaten to dump this garbage for android where you can have a personalized ringtone while looking at your phones files and application folders or class action lawsuit for making you purchase again what you already own as media (not media only for 1 device) or somehow keeping you from viewing the contents of your own device something may change. You can’t tell me these guys at microsoft were clueless that consumers want personalized ringtones!!!! How absurd.

  29. jess says

    I totally agree with everyone the window 7 phones suck ass I don’t know if it was just mine or not but my first one froze up on me that gave me another one then i was starting to play on it on day and wonted ringtones but i couldn’t fucking do it how can they even consider this a smart phone…? My husband has an iPod and there this app called jailbreak and it was really cool but i couldn’t even get that its said to my straight talk phone could even get free ringtones but this phone can’t wtf….. !! These phones are a waste of your time and money… I’m about to take mine back and get an iPhone if they don’t do something….

  30. brenno1023 says

    Yeah, ditto above. I’m looking at unlocked iPhones on ebay at the moment because of how sad WP7 makes me. I hate the overpriced garbage phone, but it seems to work by the millions of users it gains each month…
    Part of me (okay, MOST of me) wants to hold onto wp7 because it’s so smooth and different and easy to use; it makes me think about how far the iPhone has come since its first release, knowing it was far from perfect when it started. I just can’t give up on windows phone yet. It’s not perfect, but once updates start rolling out, and Nokia gets on board and releases better spec’d phones (anybody keen for a N900-esque 32GBs worth of storage, an N8-esque Ovi turn-by-turn nav suite and an expansion slot allowing for up to ANOTHER 32GBs of storage? I know, we all are!) MS will dedicate themselves to rolling out the changes and features in leaps and bounds to make sure it stays competitive, pushing updates that add more and more features over a period of JUST months that the iPhone is STILL steadily adding to its reportoire after 4 years of service.
    That’s the dream anyway. But doesn’t it sound so exciting? They could make it the ultimate phone OS, just like iOS, if they only give it half the time the iPhone has had over the years…and they can only do it as long as we support the cause. In time the manufacturers will put out better spec’d phones, and MS/Nokia will put more time and effort into making the OS the best it can be.
    And to be honest, i think the default ringtones are growing on me, BUT that doesn’t mean i’m not unhappy with my inability to choose!
    I say bring on the next year of WP7, and let’s see what they give us, but i’m not forking out money for any more apps until i feel it’s worth a good splurge…and if they can’t deliver, then they’re not going to progress very far for very long..

  31. matthias says

    I have grown fond of my Samsung focus, getting custom ringtones when I think about it is kind of a complicated process for the average consumer once I got my phone unlocked its quite easy, I leave it unlocked now because last time I tried to unlock it I ran in to troubles and had to edit my registry and other more complicated such things, =/ also I have bricked two Samsung focuses after trying to use memory expansion slot, seems the phone will work flawless with added memory until you restart the device a few times, then it goes to crap =( I really hope they fix the memory issue soon, I ran through the 8gb of internal memory the first day of ownership =(

  32. Dean Collisson says

    Give us our own custom ringtones. We bought 4 focus phones only to find out that we cannot download ANY ringtones. come on now. At least tell us IF you are thinking about it, I have not seen any word one way or the other

  33. Teresa says

    I really hate my new htc mozart with the windows operating system. Obviously Microsoft has set out to create the most hated phones in the history of mobile phones. Creating a mobile phone operating system that doesn’t allow you to customise the ringtone is like making one that won’t allow you to text. IT IS JUST STUPID…..I am sure that anyone who works for Microsoft that actually uses this damn phone can customise their ringtones. TELL YOUR FRIENDS NOT TO BUY IT, TELL EVERYONE YOU MEET HOW UNHAPPY IT MAKES YOU EVERYTIME YOU HEAR OR DON’T HEAR THE PHONE RING BECAUSE YOU DON’T RECOGNISE THE STUPID RINGTONE. WTF MICROSOFT???????!!!!!!!!!!!! I attempted to take my phone back to exchange it for a different one the same day that I purchased it but they wouldn’t do that, so I am stuck with it, or I have to pay out the money to buy a proper mobile phone. TELL YOUR FRIENDS NOT TO BUY IT, TELL EVERYONE YOU MEET HOW UNHAPPY IT MAKES YOU EVERYTIME YOU HEAR OR DON’T HEAR THE PHONE RING BECAUSE YOU DON’T RECOGNISE THE STUPID RINGTONE. WTF MICROSOFT???????!!!!!!!!!!!!

  34. sharie says

    My hubby made the Samsung focus windows 7 sound so cool but now that I’m finding out all the stuff I did with my BlackBerry I can’t do on this dang thing. I want my frigging bb back…i liked the custom ringtones and being able to copy and paste in fb and different sites…this wp7 is lacking all the features I really liked on my bb!!!! This phone is more for people who like playing games with cell … Even though it does have a good camera …i did alot. More. With my curve than I can with this piece of junk…i am very disappointed by all means!!! Now however I’m stuck with it for a dang year…no music, not very happy here!!!

  35. Mick says

    What a crock of s..t phone ok fast smart. Or is it smart nah
    Why no copy past no bluetooth send pics tones etc (ment to be stop copyright) what poo..
    Mine is 2nd hand wish I neever got the damn thing now it was grade b/c no box unlocked.
    I also see that the rattle heads at ms decided not to use cab files like on my othe previous three models eg hd2
    So no good apps only cak apps from Market place and they saythis phone is a iPhone killer THINK NOT ..
    my hd2 did better than this why not even a micro ad card on the thing why do you even have to go to the website that someone here has mentioned to download this software to do tones you still need net compact 4 this is hard to download anyway I am using this cak for now then go to android at least you can send pics tones music etc oh and change your own raingtone

  36. says


    I regret to inform all that as of Microsoft’s latest update “NoDo” for WP7 devices all attempts made to side load additional custom ringtones to any WP7 device have been unsuccessful. My standing theory is the most recent update “NoDo” must in part negate the usage of the required software used to side load the XAP files to WP7 devices.

    -Now for the good news

    Any WP7 users who have stuck it out can look forward to the next update which will add some very exciting features INCLUDING CUSTOM RINGTONES.

    -Below is a list of many of the exciting new features soon to come to WP7!

    – Bing Audio: Shazam-style audio track recognition
    – Multitasking for third-party apps, deeper integration with live tiles (VERY COOL!)
    – An overhauled Live Tile system (Very Nice!)
    – Internet Explorer 9, support for HTML 5
    – Bing Vision: Integrated scanning for barcodes, tags, text, etc.
    – Voice recognition for drafting text messages (SWEET!!)
    – Email folders pinnable to the start screen for quick access
    – Facebook Chat and Windows Live Messenger integration
    – New conversation view for email exchanges
    – Ability to search email servers for archived messages
    – New Lync app for Windows Phone (IM and presence), a likely first step toward Skype integration
    – Support for complex passwords (alphanumeric)
    – Information rights management support for protected emails and documents
    – Ability to access hidden corporate WiFi networks
    – Native podcast search and download in the Windows Phone Marketplace
    – Integrated turn-by-turn directions
    – The ability to send SMS text messages to preset groups of contacts
    – Integration of Office 365 and SkyDrive in the Office hub
    – Overhaul of the Games hub, with an auto-sync feature
    – Twitter integration into the Windows Phone People hub
    – The ability to quickly search for installed apps by keyword
    – Access to motion sensor and camera by third-party apps
    – Over the air podcast downloading and custom ringtones.

    A very notable addition will be Multi-Tasking visit the following link to see the press release of this great feature coming with the “Mango” update.

    • Victoria says

      Matthias, My Husband and I just got the WP7 a couple of days ago and when we learned that he couldn’t (yup) add custom ring tones I felt so bad for talking him into getting it then thought there must be a way and in my search found this this treasure of information. Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge and helping me redem myself…so do you know how soon this very exciting next Microsoft update will be out, how do I get the update, and is there a way right now for getting custom ringtones?…I really had to work at getting my husband to upgrade his phone because he loved all his custom ringtones on his old phone I didn’t want create them all again. His old phone is a Razor! so you know how much convincing I had to do, and then this ringtone issue smacks me. Can you please help me out, like now.

  37. di says

    oooo geez i have had this phone for 2 months and i love the phone but the no ringtones is driving me crazy!!!! so when is the update coming??

  38. aaron p says

    i guess all you have to do with the new windows phone 7.5 update is sync an mp3 or wma to the phone, then edit the id tag to show the Genre ‘ringtone’. The file must be less than 1mb, less than 40 seconds, and have no drm strings attached. Fairly easy once you get used to it, but its definitely the weirdest way I’ve ever heard to do it.

  39. jon says

    7.5 still no way to download files from internet like ringtones. Can’t even put any custom ringtones. Thanks Microsoft, you suck… Its all about greed and control. F.u.

  40. Emii says

    I finally found how to add ringtones to my HTC hd7
    Download WebTones from marketplace
    then use either or mobango to download your ringtones
    by copying the URL then paste into Webtone
    After you save it then it will be in your ringtones
    the ringtones are only 30 seconds long but at least
    Its not the boring ones anymore I hope this helps

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