Was out to dinner with my friend Erica the other night and since I recently made her some ringtones (Heart & Soul Solo and Heart and Soul Duet), she said the gift got her thinking about how people could use them. Her basic idea was that it be lovely if she could easily give the ringtones to people she knew as audio identifiers for her.
I loved the idea–then ringtones are like electronic calling cards of sorts! Why not? What if people were more engaged in making and sharing original ringtones and they would be easily sharable when you give out your phone number. A ringtone could be an individual’s audio “signature” of sorts. They already are, but we generally pick or program many of them for others. Erica’s idea is interesting because it asserts an individual’s personal flair/agency rather than representing somebody else’s identification for another.
Project Challenges: Distribution
How could the tones be efficiently/easily embedded somewhere for people to share and use? Could Skype have them? Could Facebook or MySpace accomodate them? Would people use flash drives to quickly put them on phones? Some people, when they put me into their phone contacts, they just call me up right away, to store my number and then they type in my name/deets. Moving a ringtone over to someone during that sort of momentary exchange could be key.
I will have to ask the gentlemen at deeplocal about this one. People who contribute thier ideas to the project (especially ringtone idea submissions) will need easy ways to get them on their phones and to other people. Streamlining distribution for different phones, service providers, etc. will be a big and interesting challenge.