Sync Ringtones to iPhone through iTunes

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.

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.

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: Drag-n-drop ringtones to sync to iPhone

In the left navigation panel of iTunes, go to Devices > iPhone > Tones. The “Tones” tab opens on the right with a list of all existing custom ringtones on your iPhone.

sync custom ringtones, text tones from pc to iphone using itunes

To sync custom ringtones, text tones from PC to iPhone using itunes, simply drag the ringtone files in .m4r formats from your desktop or other folder to the Tones list in iTunes.

After the sync, you can find the custom ringtones, text tones from iPhone Settings. 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, iPhone X.

Sync Ringtones to iPhone – video demo

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 Sep 2017: 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.

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

Update Jan 2018: upload the video demo. iTunes has simplified the sync of ringtones, now you can directly import ringtones from computer to iPhone without adding them to iTunes library first.

8 thoughts on “Sync Ringtones to iPhone through iTunes”

  1. 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. 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.

    1. 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.

  3. Connie McKinnie

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

    1. 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.

  4. 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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