Changing Your Android Ringtone

Your Droid doesn't have to sound like a droid

When it comes to making your phone truly your own, using custom ringtones is a must. Whether you choose one ringtone for all your incoming calls or set a specific one for every caller, the Android operating system has all the power and the flexibility you need. We'll show you how to do it.

The instructions below apply no matter who made your Android phone: Samsung, Google, Huawei, Xiaomi, etc. In some models, such as the Samsung Galaxy Note 8, there is no Okay button to press. Simply press the Home screen button and go about your day.

How to Set Default Ringtones

Depending on the model of Android phone you have, you can choose from several stock ringtones. Here's how to find and browse through them:

  1. Open your phone's Settings app.

  2. Tap on Sound.

  3. The sound settings contain all sorts of options to adjust the different volume levels and tones on your device. These vary slightly based on your device and the version of Android that it's running, but they should all be fairly similar. Find the Phone Ringtone option and select it.

    Depending on which version of Android you're using, the Phone Ringtone option might be under the Advanced section. If so, tap on the down arrow to open it up.

  4. From here, you see a list of ringtones or a list of ringtone categories available on your device. You can tap a ringtone once to hear what it sounds like. When you find one you want to use as your default ringer, tap OK or Save to save the selection.

    You can change your ringtone in the Android Settings app

How to Set Default Ringtones on Samsung Phones

If you own a Samsung device, the process for setting a ringtone is a little different. Here's how to do it:

  1. Launch the Settings app, then tap Sounds and vibration.

  2. Find Ringtone in the list and tap it.

  3. Choose the ringtone you want to set for your phone.

  4. Finally, tap the back arrow at the bottom of your screen to set your new ringtone. You can tap the Home button to dismiss the Settings app.

    Three Samsung Android screens showing Sounds and vibration, Ringtone, and back arrow button

How to Download New Ringtones From Your Computer

The simplest and least expensive way to get new ringtones is to transfer them over from your computer. Most Android devices can use regular music files as ringtones.

While plenty of devices accept other formats, sticking to MP3 and OGG is generally a good idea.

  1. Connect your Android device to your computer via a USB cable. Usually, you can use the cable that's part of your charger.

  2. On your Android device, swipe down from the top of the screen to see your notifications. You should see a system notification stating that your device is connected via USB for charging. Tap that notification.

  3. A new dialog box opens up and allows you to choose what the USB is used for. Choose File transfer. Your computer might automatically open a window showing the phone's storage. If it does, skip to Step 6.

    USB charging this device, Transfer files button in Android
  4. If your computer doesn't automatically navigate to the phone's storage, open Windows Explorer or whichever file browser is available on your system.

  5. Navigate to where your device is mounted. This is the same location your PC displays connected USB drives. On Windows, it's This PC.

    This PC on Windows
  6. In your Android device's internal storage, find and open the Ringtones folder.

    Ringtones folder in Windows
  7. Copy any music files you want to use as ringtones into this folder. When you return to your phone's Sound settings, you should find them listed among the default system ringtones.

Where to Find Ringtones Online

If your phone's default ringtones don't offer the level of customization you want, go to Google Play and do a quick search for ringtones. The search results include many apps—some paid and some free. Here are two free apps worth considering:

Three Google Play screens showing search for ringtones, then two pages of results.

ZEDGE Ringtones & Wallpapers

Make your phone a conversation starter with the free ringtones in the ZEDGE app. It also includes notification sounds, app icons, alarms, and free wallpapers. You can download and use a high-quality ringtone for each member of your family or for each of your friends. Categories include rock, rap, and country, plus classic ringtones and sound effects. Assign the ringtones to individual contacts from within the app.

RingDroid

This app allows you to use up to 30 seconds of a song in your media library and create a ringtone from it. It takes a little while to get used to the interface, but once you make a few ringtones, the process is easy and effective.