1. Computing

Top 5 Web Sites for Cheap, Free Ringtones

The best sources for cheap, free ringtones with no hassles

By

The second you unwrap your cell phone from its mass-produced state, your journey of personalization begins. Downloading cheap and free ringtones is one of the more popular ways we brand a phone to ourselves and identify our friends when they're calling.

With a universe of merchants competing for your ringtone dollar, I’ve compiled a top-five free ringtones list. I explain why they’re such stellar ringtone havens and what cautions to keep in mind.

You’ll see familiar letter grades (from “A+” to “F-”) and an overall point score out of 20 points. Here’s how to download ringtones. Find your new cell phone, too.

1. Ringophone.com (view our full list of ringtones sites)

The Ringophone logo
Image © Ringophone
Selection: A
Price: A+
Overall: 19

Ringophone.com is different. They want you to “stop paying for a single ringtone” and eat all you want for a set fee. Since six months of unlimited ringtones is only $14.99 and 12 months is only $19.99, you’ll easily start saving money over many other sites once you’ve downloaded only a handful.

As of when this article was published, Ringophone.com had a large library of 250,756 ringtones for sale. The company allows you to pay once and download forever, which means you can download a ringtone again if you’ve lost it or if you change phones.

You can even download to unlimited phone numbers, which means you can share ringtones with your friends once you’ve bought them.

2. RingToneJukeBox.com (view our full list of ringtones sites)

The RingToneJukeBox logo
Image © RingToneJukeBox
Selection: A
Price: B
Overall: 18

RingToneJukeBox.com, which is regularly updated with fresh ringtones, features a wide array of ringtones. The company supports many devices including Nokia, Motorola, Samsung, Sanyo, Hitachi, LG and Siemens.

Most ringtones run $2.99 each or $1.99 each for more simple ringtones. Subscribers to AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, Verizon Wireless, Alltel, Cellular One, Boost Mobile and Virgin Mobile can be charged on your current cell phone bill and order via SMS (text message).

3. Myxer (view our full list of ringtones sites)

Myxer
Image © Myxer
Selection: A
Price: B-
Overall: 17

Myxer boasts that millions of its users have downloaded millions of its content options from its catalog of millions of items. Even more, some of its ringtones are free.

Myxer ringtones can be easily sent to a cell phone just be entering its phone number, too. The ones that aren’t free, though, can cost $0.99 each all the way up to $2.99 each for premium content.

This can add up quickly if you’re wanting quite a few. While Myxer says it features “no annoying subscriptions, monthly charges or gimmicks,” some users might want an all-you-can-download plan for one low price.

Myxer also allows you to make your own content by uploading image and music files to create ringtones and wallpapers.

4. ‘Hot Ringtones’ chart from Billboard (view our full list of ringtones sites)

The Billboard logo
Image © Billboard
Selection: B-
Price: B
Overall: 16

The value of this ringtones list is its comprehensiveness and objectivity.

The “Hot Ringtones” chart from Billboard Magazine is published weekly. Based on Nielsen SoundScan data, the ringtones are ranked by weekly sales from a comprehensive crowd of merchants representing 90 percent of the U.S. retail music market.

While the data is there, though, purchasing them is limited. The service currently only supports AT&T (still listed as Cingular) and T-Mobile for ringtone downloads. That's a major drawback.

5. MTV Mobile Ringtones (view our full list of ringtones sites)

The MTV Mobile logo
Image © MTV Mobile
Selection: B
Price: C-
Overall: 14

The main perk is that the site freshens weekly with what’s deemed to be the most popular ringtones by the MTV universe. The site also has a large archive from many artists. Its pricing can easily be beat elsewhere, though.

Downloading only one ringtone a month runs $2.99 a month (and you’re pushed to be locked into a monthly subscription plan) whereas two ringtones a month run a pricey $5.99. Four ringtones run $9.99. You can also opt for a-la-carte buying instead.

While the service offers the sexy allure that is MTV and its recommendations, its pricing is highly undesirable.

Visual Tutorial: How to download ringtones.
Cell Phone Chooser: Take our 20-question test to reveal your best new cell phone!
  1. About.com
  2. Computing
  3. Cell Phones
  4. Cell Phones - The Basics
  5. Ringtones
  6. Free Ringtones - 5 Best Web Sites for Cheap, Free Ringtones

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.