The golden age of personalized ringtones began with the introduction of polyphonic ringtones. Zingy, the market leader, reported selling up to 2.5 million ringtones per month. A ringtone is a sound that a telephone makes to indicate an incoming call. It can be a recording of the original telephone bells or any other sound.
Vesku was the first to submit an idea to the Finnish wireless service provider Radiolinja that would allow users to have personalized ringtones. This was a major breakthrough, as it allowed people to express themselves through their phones. The social status of a person could be determined by their ringtone - the cooler the ringtone, the cooler you were. The popularity of personalized ringtones grew even further with the development of polyphonic ringtones, which had four different audio channels.
This made it possible for ringtones to sound more like the original melody of a song. The music industry also benefited from this, as millions of dollars were invested in sales of ringtones. According to Richard Conlon, senior vice president of corporate strategy, communications and new media at Broadcast Music Inc., “Ringtones were popular in part because they were one of the first audio products accessible via mobile phones”. Mobile phone users may not think so much about them, but about the gradual ones.
The decline of the once lucrative ringtone has been bittersweet for people in the music industry. A ringtone creator is an application that converts a song or other audio file chosen by the user to be used as a ringtone for a mobile phone.