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Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Ringtones--Do we really need them?

Ok, I got a new phone. Verizon was able to move my contacts over to the new phone but not the ring tones. Seems somewhat suspicions to me since I now have to buy the same ringtones again. Of course I could be satisfied with one of the standard ringtones that comes with the phone. Not likely though, being a boomer, I wanted a Cream ringtone and a Who ringtone. Of course I had to get my wife a Led Zeppelin ringtone. Do we need them? No, do we want them, yes. It is an expression of individualism, it makes me smile when my phone rings.

Were they easy to get? NO. In fact I wonder how many people don’t get them because it is cumbersome. To me a web site where I could just pick out the ringtones I wanted and have them downloaded to my phone would have been perfect. Every web site I found wanted a financial commitment,(most $9.99) each month. Why would I want to change my ringtone each month and why would I want to make a long term commitment. So I downloaded them for the phone from the phone. Sounds simple but when you get knocked off multiple times with “the network is busy at the moment” message it becomes an exercise in frustration. The free service that allowed me to search their ringtones kept dropping off line. I finally tried the Sony service, the Led Zeppelin selection was abysmal and they charged me $3.00 for the privilege of looking at their catalog. That is a total ripoff since I would still have had to pay for the ringtone if they had had it. I finally got what I wanted in addition I got things I didn’t want such as frustration, anger, despair and reluctant acceptance that if I wanted the specific ringtones I had to play their stupid games.

You can get what you want if you are willing to jump through the corporate hoop to get it and are stubborn enough to persist. If they made it a cleaner, simpler process, they would sell more ringtones. Certainly is obvious why the younger folk hack their ringtones and don’t pay for them. I don’t think it is the money, I think it is the aggravation factor. They are not willing to spend the time to jump threw the hoops. I am not sure they are wrong.

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