Ringtones are a complete rip-off

Post ImageI’ve never purchased a ringtone for my cell phone, and I don’t ever intend to – they are just too damn expensive. How expensive? On Telus, ringtones cost $3.50 CDN each. With Bell, they range from $2.50 to $4.00 CDN each. And on Rogers, comparable ringtones start at $3.00 CDN each, excluding a 75 cent download fee.

So after a little math we get an average cost of $3.50 CDN for a single ringtone. What else could you buy for $3.50?

  • My favorite – two items from the McDonald’s Value Picks Menu. And for 49 cents more, you could get one of the Value Meals.
  • You could purchase three complete songs from iTunes.
  • Two 710 ml bottles of Gatorade at Wal-Mart.
  • Almost two Grande coffees at Starbucks, or two Extra Large coffees at McDonald’s.
  • You could store 20 GB of data at Amazon S3 for a month. Or 1 GB for 20 months. Or you could transfer up to 15 GB in a month.
  • Any one of the 63,275 items available on eBay in just the DVD, HD-DVD & Blu-ray category that are less than $3.50.
  • A breakfast sandwich from Tim Horton’s.
  • And of course, three items from pretty much any dollar store!

Can you think of a worse deal? Cupcakes are expensive. Perhaps gas – you could only get 4.3 liters in Edmonton today for $3.50 CDN. Transportation in general sucks actually. One trip on ETS costs $2.50 CDN.

The high price of ringtones is just sick. Why pay Bell $4.00 for a ringtone when you could pay them $5.99 and get an entire movie streamed to your phone? It’s absurd.

Please don’t buy ringtones – it only encourages the wireless carriers to charge such ridiculous prices.

6 thoughts on “Ringtones are a complete rip-off

  1. Funny now half of the under 3.50 items you suggest are unhealthy dietary items (also consumable in the non-asset/re-usable sense), i.e. nothing of quality being given up when choosing to spend your 3.50 on a ringtone.

    But yes they are expensive and the cost of mobile data transfer is without doubt extortionate. I can only image what will happen when HSDPA (currently trialing in GTA) goes nationwide if there isn’t an ‘unlimited’ package

  2. I remember back in 2004 I was crazy about ringtones, I downloaded them like crazy. When I got my Sony Ericsson K500i in 2005 September, I went crazy dowloading mp3 clips to use as ringtones. Then I got my Motorola V3i where I can store 256 mb worth of mp3s if I wanted to. Now, I don’t download them, I just connect the data cable and interchange the songs. I have some old software to make mp3 clips from the whole song, I I just want a section as the ringtone or even the middle of a song like a guitar solo as my RT. No longer downloading it as I get it free.

  3. $3.50 is a lot for a ring tone. It’s also a lot for a cup of coffee. However, I’m much more inclined to spend $3.50 on something tangible, rather than a digital file.

    Movies? On a cell phone? How can you even see the screen? Gah.

  4. $3.50 is a lot for a ring tone. It’s also a lot for a cup of coffee. However, I’m much more inclined to spend $3.50 on something tangible, rather than a digital file.

    Movies? On a cell phone? How can you even see the screen? Gah.

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