Counterclockwise: Nokia Tune, iPhone Marimba and the popularity of ringtones

May 28th, 2017   decode   news

A default ringtone is a dead giveaway of what kind of phone you have – even if it’s out of sight, in your pocket or backpack. Some tones have become as recognizable as hit songs, people certainly hear them often enough.

One of the most famous ringtones is the Nokia Tune aka “Grande Valse”. Based on 1902’s composition for solo guitar by Francisco Tarrega, the tune has seen many updates and changes and is solidly lodged in our minds.

But the first time Nokia used the Grande Valse was not as a ringtone, instead it used it in a 1992 ad for the Nokia 1011, the company’s first GSM phone. The…

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