Sometimes when you have ringtones downloaded or purchased on your computer, or you might have just converted your music songs to ringtones with GarageBand or iTunes on your computer, you need to send them to your iPhone. To create free ringtones from your music files with iTunes, check out following guide to create free iPhone ringtones with iTunes. In fact, the sync of iPhone ringtones is virtually the same as other iTunes files, like music, videos, photos, etc. We will describe how to sync ringtones to iPhone with or without iTunes below.

How to Transfer Ringtones to iPhone through iTunes?

Sync ringtones from computer to iPhone is just like you transfer other content or files to iPhone. You need to use iTunes or other easier transfer tools. Below we will demonstrate how you can sync ringtones to iPhone using iTunes, at the end of this guide, we will also suggest some iTunes alternative that can also help you send ringtones from computer to iPhone, but in a much easier way.

Step 1: Connect your iPhone to Computer via USB

Plugin your iPhone device into your PC or Mac with supplied USB data cable. This may help you launch iTunes on your computer automatically.

Step 2: Start iTunes on your Computer

Double click on the iTunes icon to launch the iTunes app on your computer if it did not start automatically when your iPhone is connected to computer.

Step 3: Add ringtones from computer to iTunes

add ringtone to itunes library
We firstly need to import or add the ringtones from computer to iTunes library. There will be a Tones library in the iTunes, along with other libraries like Music, Movies, TV shows, etc. If you can’t see it, go to add ringtones to iTunes, then the Tones will be displayed in your iTunes library. There are three different ways you can add ringtones from PC or Mac to iTunes.

  • Method 1. Go to File menu >> select Add File to library …. item from the drop-down menu list.
  • Method 2. Press Ctrl+O on your keyboard to add ringtone to library in iTunes.
  • Method 3. The easiest way to load your ringtones from your computer hard drive to iTunes, is to drag and drop the ringtone file to iTunes library.

Step 4: Select ringtones to sync to iPhone

Your iPhone name will be listed under the Device section on the left menu of iTunes. Click on your iPhone, click the “Tones” to open the ringtones tab.

Sync Ringtones to iPhone through iTunes

Update 1:

The above screenshot was taken on an earlier iTunes version for Windows. Here is how you can add ringtones from PC to iPhone using iTunes

Sync Ringtones PC to iPhone through iTunes 12.1.2

Unlock your iPhone screen. When you see the “Trust this computer?” prompt on your phone screen, hit the Trust button, so iTunes can access your iPhone. Click the iPhone icon at the top left corner of iTunes, go to Settings >> Tones from the left navigation panel. Check the box for “Sync Tones” and then check the boxes for the ringtones you want to sync. There are 2 options to select, check “All tones” to choose all the ringtone files to sync, or check “Selected tones” to select the specified ringtones that you want to transfer.

Update 2: Transfer ringtones to iOS device using iTunes 12.7
The latest iTunes brings a lot of new features. Adding ringtones to iPhone with iTunes 12.7 is different from earlier versions.
transfer ringtones from pc to iphone ipad using itunes 12.7

Update: This article was originally published in 2012 and has since been updated. In the recent update in Oct 2017, the ringtone transfer via iTunes 12.7 was added.

Step 5: Sync ringtones to iPhone via itunes – optional

Finally click Apply button in the bottom right corner of iTunes to sync all or selected ringtones to iPhone via iTunes. The synced ringtone files will appear on your iPhone as a ringtone automatically. With the latest iTunes version, no need to click the Apply or Sync button, drag and drop the ringtone files to the right section of iTunes, they will be copied over instantly. Scroll up and go to the previous linked article for more details about ringtones transfer using iTunes 12.7.

You need to enable it as your default ringtone on iPhone.

This ringtones sync via iTunes applies to various iPhone models and iOS versions, such as iPhone 4s, iPhone 5, iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 plus, iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8, iPhone 8 plus.

Other iPhone Ringtones transfer methods

Except iTunes, other iPhone management and transfer tools provide similar functions to allow you transfer ringtones from computer to iPhone without iTunes. TunesGo is one of the most popular one. It can help you transfer not only ringtones, but also many other data such as books, PDFs, contacts, etc.

Update: this article was originally published in 2012 and has since been updated. In a recent update in Sep 2017, the iPhone ringtones transfer without iTunes has been added. You have more options copying ringtones from computer to iPhone.

8 thoughts on “Sync Ringtones to iPhone through iTunes

  1. KitchenCounsel

    My God, what a PITA. I guess iPhones are cool and all, but it was so easy to just drag and drop files from my PC over to my Android and then play ’em or designate as ring tones. iTunes sux the big one.

  2. Chris Smith

    Thanks for this, especially the screen shot. (In syncing the wife’s new phone to my laptop one of the bought tones disappeared!!!!!!!!) I’m now back in favour.

    • Matt

      you are welcome.
      thanks for the feedback about your own experience, so we know it works with new iPhone as well.

  3. Shyanne

    On the itunes, I cant click on the thing that says” Matt’s Iphone”

    • Matt

      Hi, we have updated the screenshot and added more details using the current iTunes version You can scroll up and refer to the new screenshot and instructions at “Step 4: Select ringtones to sync to iPhone” from above post see if any help.

  4. Connie McKinnie

    I really need to move my purchased music and ring tones to my new iPhone 6s that I just bought today.

    • Matt

      you can download the purchased music and ringtones to your new iPhone from iTunes Store. Access iTunes store on your new iPhone, tap on More… icon at the bottom right corner, then choose Purchased. Alternatively you can open iTunes store, switch to Music tab if it does not open automatically, scroll down to the bottom of this page, you can find your Apple ID. Log in your Apple account here if not yet. Then find the Purchased link in the Quick Links section which is just above your Apple ID.

  5. Connie McKinnie

    I bought a new iphone 6s today, but none of my ringtones or songs transferred. I have spend quite a bit of money on them, and I’d like to continue using them.

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