How to Change the New Mail Sound in iOS Mail

You can pick special sounds for VIPs and threads on iPhone or iPad

Man using a smartphone

Uwe Krejci / Getty Images

Sounds are built-in to iOS devices, and you can pick any of them for new email sounds. Open the Mail settings and select an alert tone or ringtone for new emails, or to buy new sounds for email alerts. Set up unique sounds for each email account on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. Or, have your device play a unique sound when you receive mail from VIP senders or when you get emails from certain threads.

Instructions in this article apply to any iOS device running a modern version of Mail, including devices with iOS 11 and iOS 12.

How to Pick a New Email Sound in iOS Mail

To choose the sound that plays when you receive a new email message:

  1. Open the Settings app.

  2. Go to Notifications > Mail.

  3. Turn on the Allow Notifications toggle switch.

    Notifications, Mail icons in iOS Settings
  4. Choose the account:

    • Select an email account to change its new email sound.
    • If VIP senders is set up, make Mail create a different sound to distinguish those senders from other recipients. Choose VIP instead of a specific email account.
    • Choose Thread Notifications to make a different email sound for the messages you've enabled notifications for.

    Custom sounds for VIP and Thread Notifications work even if other Mail notifications are disabled.

  5. Tap Sounds.

    VIP settings, Sounds, Thread Notifications in iOS Settings
  6. Select the new email sound you want to use for the email account, VIP senders, or email threads that have notifications enabled.

  7. Each tone you select plays a preview sound.

    Tone Store, Note, Alert Tones store in iOS

    Choose Tone Store to shop for new sounds.

  8. Press the home button to save and exit the settings. Or, repeat the steps to change the email sound for a different email account.