How to Change Ringtone on the iPhone & Safeguard Your Data

The same old ringtone can get boring very quickly. Hearing the exact same sound repetitively ring from your phone every time you receive a call might eventually lead you to silence your device just so you can escape the noise.

Then, you run into the issue of multiple missed calls. What if they were important? Like someone trying to alert you of data security issues. There is just no way to beat the situation – except there is. You can change the ringtone on your iPhone to whatever sound or song you desire.

Want a quacking duck to alert you that you have a call? You got it. Do you want One Direction to blast from your phone whenever you receive a phone call? Done. Don’t let a boring ringtone cause you to miss important calls. Read on to learn how to change the ringtone on your iPhone.

How to Change Ringtone to a Different iPhone Sound

When you first buy your iPhone, the device will come set up with the standard ringtone. Just like your alarm sounds, text tones, and other notifications, you will need to customize your iPhone sounds to fit your preferences. Here’s how you can change your ringtone to another provided iPhone sound.

Step 1: Open the Settings app on your iPhone

After unlocking your iPhone, navigate to the settings icon, and open the app. If you cannot find the app, simply type “Settings” into your search bar, and you will be able reach the app from there.

Step 2: Open the “Sounds & Haptics” Tab

Navigate to the “Sounds & Haptics” option, and click to open the tab. Once on the page, you will see options to put your phone on vibrate, adjust the volume of your notifications and ringtone, as well as many choices to change the sound or vibration pattern of the various notifications your iPhone may receive.

Step 3: Click “Ringtone” and choose from the list of ringtones that Apple provides

On the “Ringtone” page, you will notice a variety of ringtones that you can choose from for free. The names of the ringtones, such as “Apex” or “Sencha,” are not the most indicative of what the ringtone will actually sound like, so the best way to choose from this list is to click on each individual sound and give them a listen. Once you find a sound you like, simply click on the ringtone name. You have now set that sound as your ringtone, and you can exit the app.

An Alternative to Step 3: Click “Tone Store” and explore the list of sounds that you can buy from Apple to set as your ringtone

Apple provides you with the option to purchase popular sounds to set as your ringtone from their store. These ringtones can range from Halloween-themed music to top hits on the radio to the theme song of The Office. However, these sounds are not free. Each sound is $1.29, but if you are willing to pay for the sound, it is an easy way to set a ringtone of your choice for your iPhone.

How to Change Ringtone to a Sound or Song Not Provided by iPhone

If you are putting in the effort to change your iPhone ringtone, you probably are not in the market to change it to another boring instrumental sound that Apple provides. Maybe you want a quacking duck or a TikTok sound or maybe even your friend’s voice telling a joke to notify you that you’re receiving a call. Here’s how to change your ringtone to a custom sound of your choice.

Step 1: Download iTunes

With apps like Spotify and Apple Music, you almost never have to use iTunes anymore. However, to set your own custom sound as your ringtone, you will need to download the latest version of iTunes from Apple onto your Windows PC (Mac comes with iTunes already installed).

Step 2: Select the sound clip you want to use as your ringtone

Whether it is a song you downloaded or a sound you recorded, you can use it as your ringtone. Make sure your sound file is under 40 seconds because iTunes will not accept a ringtone that is longer than 40 seconds. You can use a free audio editor to shorten the sound if it is too long.

Step 3: Convert the MP3 file to AAC

In order for your sound to be accepted as a ringtone, it must be in AAC format. Once the file is converted, add it to your iTunes library.

Step 4: Rename your sound file

Rename your AAC file, so you can easily locate it when selecting the sound for your ringtone.

Step 5: Add the sound to your iPhone

Once you have the file prepared, connect your laptop device to your iPhone. You will likely receive a pop-up notification on your phone asking if it should trust your computer. Click “Trust”. Back on your laptop, navigate to the device icon in iTunes to the left of the word “Library.” Click the “Tones” option under the subsection “On My Devices.” Drag and drop the sound file into the “Tones” folder so your phone will now have access to the sound. If the drag and drop feature does not work, copy and paste the file into the “Tones” folder.

Step 6: Choose your custom sound in the Ringtone setting

Follow the steps from the “How to Change Ringtone to a Different iPhone Sound” section to select your ringtone. You will now receive calls with your personalized sound or song!

Safeguard Your Data for Security

Now that you’ve walked through the entire handbook on how to change ringtone on the iPhone, you can take a closer look at your security. While you may have a unique ringtone for some or all of your contacts, what if you aren’t protected enough? Are your contacts encrypted? Sadly, a custom ringtone is hardly a proper screening mechanism.

In the modern digital world, encrypting your phone is just another must-have. How can you safeguard your data from hackers and malicious users? Whether you are using your device for personal or business purposes, it is paramount that you have the proper data protection in place.

Our friends at Covve present three easy steps for you to do just that:

  1. Encrypt Your Phone

It’s simple, I know, but the first step is to encrypt your phone (or phones if you have one for work and one for personal use). Encryption will protect you if you lose your phone or it is stolen. iPhone users can simply open Settings and enable password or biometric authentication, such as a fingerprint or FaceID.

Using the strongest authentication method available on your iPhone model for the most protection. Similar to any online accounts, a complex alphanumeric passcode is going to protect you better than both a numeric passcode or biometric authentication simply because it’s harder to fake.

  1. Set a Mobile PIN

Chances are you have apps or logins on your phone for important things, like your bank account. Curious how hackers can gain access to accounts that you’ve taken extra precaution to set two-factor authentication?

It’s a little something called SIM-swapping. Hackers bypass 2FA accounts with SIM-swapping attacks. This tactic also jeopardizes any online services that use text passcodes to reset passwords. If your phone number is hijacked from SIM-swapping attackers, they can also access your text messages and gain access to your accounts.

Setting a mobile PIN on your phone account is crucial for fighting against these attacks. With a PIN, you are disabling the ability to transfer your phone number without that PIN. You can do this with your carrier: Verizon, T-Mobile, AT&T.

  1. Activate Automatic Updates

Auto-update can save you from the vulnerabilities of outdated software that can have bugs and increased threats of attack. Software updates ensure your phone’s operating system (OS) is safe and maintains the regular (and adjusted) security fixes from the developers.

To set up automatic updates for iOS:

  • Open the Settings app
  • Go to General > Software Update > Automatic Updates
  • Toggle Automatic Updates on

And you’re all set! Securing your phone so that you can add that popping ringtone and keep your information safe is extremely important. There are simple steps in place, like encrypting your phone and implementing multi-factor authentication, that can keep out unwanted guests.

Ricardo is a freelance writer specialized in politics. He is with from the beginning and helps it grow. Email: richardorland4[at]