MiniTones: Make Treo sing your song

Fire up your PalmOne Quick Install app, boys and girls, for this light and easy ringtone creator.

MiniTones mobile ringtone creator
The Trim Tone feature shortens MP3s into clips. (Credit: Palm Info Center)

Practically everything is customizable in this digital age, and your phone's ringtone is no different. It's a personal statement of individuality with a practical backbone--you flaunt your musical tastes and differentiate your ring from the dozens of other phones sounding off around you. We like MiniTones for Palm OS, a recent addition to the CNET library, because it's small, free, and straightforward.

The 51K app runs on Palm OS 5 and higher--we installed it on the 64MB memory card of a Treo 650. The app opens a list of MP3s stored on your Treo or external memory (you can port these over too with PalmOne Quick Install, part of Palm Desktop) and sync your selections with your handset's sound preferences. For example, you can program one tune to signal a known caller and another to play for unknown calls.

The most common complaint is that MiniTones, though modestly sized itself, saves the full song files on your phone's main memory, sucking up valuable real estate. The trimming feature significantly reduces file size with a slide bar you can use to edit the song into a clip of any length. It makes a difference when you're saving a 700KB clip instead of a 4.6MB MP3. The editing tools are basic--you won't be able to splice sound bites into longer clips, and there's no audio preview. Advanced editors would be better off creating more complicated ringtones in a program like Audacity (for Mac and Windows), a free desktop editing tool.

There are plenty of free MP3s at CNET Music Downloads to get you started, and as always, we want to know what you think of the app. Leave comments below or rate MiniTones for Palm OS in our library.

About Jessica Dolcourt

Jessica Dolcourt reviews smartphones and cell phones, covers handset news, and pens the monthly column Smartphones Unlocked. A senior editor, she started at CNET in 2006 and spent four years reviewing mobile and desktop software before taking on devices.