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Christmas Ringtones Android app fails to brighten up the season

by Caitlin M. Foyt

Users probably will find a suitable ringtone in Cepoid's Christmas Ringtones app, but it's probably not the greatest selection of holiday-themed ringtones in the Android marketplace.

This particular app offers a collection of 20 different ringtones, all related to Christmas in some way. To listen to a ringtone, press the triangular-shaped "Play" button. To switch it up, and explore what else is available, press the "Seek" buttons near the bottom of the screen. If you find a ringtone you like, select the "Set as Ringtone" button, which will automatically change your ringtone. Navigating your way through the app is a no-brainer.

Most users will be pleased that all of the ringtones have very high sound quality. Everything in the collection is recorded at the same volume, nothing sounds muffled, and there are no pops in the audio.

There is a sense that Cepoid, the developer of this app, made somewhat of an attempt to diversify the selection of holiday-themed ringtones. One ringtone sounds like a music box, while another sounds like a excerpt from a Trans-Siberian Orchestra song. There are a few brief exclamations of "Merry Christmas!" and "Ho! Ho! Ho" that are probably better-suited as text notifications. Then there's that classic Alvin and the Chipmunks song, a sort of trance-inspired version of Joy to the World and dogs barking along to Jingle Bells.

There are a lot of redundancies, too, both in the selection and in the ringtones themselves. When I talk about the kinds of ringtones that pop up a lot, I'm especially referring to all of the bell sound effects. From Salvation Army, Santa-styled handbells and sleigh bells to church bells and the kind of bells that are kept over store doorways, there are more bells here than I care to listen to.

There are also a handful of more brief sound effects (I mentioned these earlier) that express a holiday greeting. Instead of a crowd shouting "Merry Christmas!" in unison a single time, however, the app will instead repeat the same sound byte over and over. I don't think you need me to tell you that this gets irritating very quickly.

If you're looking for those popular/classic versions of Christmas carols, the ones that are sold on compilation albums at Starbucks and played non-stop on the radio throughout the month of December, this app isn't for you. In fact, most of these samples are best described as off the beaten path, and few include lyrics. This is both a pro and a con for different reasons.

It's good because some of these different spins on old classics give a different take on that old song you've probably heard more times than you care, too. It also made me feel nostalgic.

Listening to the songs that are played on the piano and on the organ brought back memories from elementary school when we would all participate in the annual holiday pageant, and when my family would go to church in the weeks leading up to Christmas.

It's bad because the majority of these songs just aren't what I'm looking for in a ringtone. When I downloaded this app, I expected to see an old favorite or two, something that I can sing along and rock out to for a moment before I pick up the phone. I was quite disappointed when I saw that none of my favorite classics were there.