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First Look: PocketMac Ringtone Studio 2.0 for BlackBerry

PocketMac has been in the business of connecting Macs and handheld devices for quite some time, so it's not surprising that they have decided to start working on other ways to make our mobile devices more useful. Since our readers include Mac owners who use RIM BlackBerry devices, I jumped on the opportunity to give PocketMac's new Ringtone Studio for BlackBerry a try.

In case you're wondering if I've dropped out of the iPhone world, I didn't. I do a lot of work in the mobile world, so I have a lot of different devices, including a BlackBerry Pearl 8100. The built-in ring tones aren't exactly the type of thing you'd want to listen to more than once, so having a BlackBerry ringtone editor that runs on a Mac is a good thing.

I have just one gripe about RIngtone Studio; it's a single-function application, and the price tag -- US$29.95 -- is really quite high for something that just creates ringtones. PocketMac defends the price by noting that many BlackBerry users get into subscription ringtone plans that can cost as much as US$9.99 every month.
Firing up Ringtone Studio displays a unique user interface that looks like the outline of a BlackBerry (see below). To start creating a ringtone, you drag a sound, video, or iTunes file and drop it onto the mock BlackBerry. Within a few moments, the file is transferred to the application and you see a visual representation of the sound on the mock screen. Trim a portion of the sound (up to 40 seconds long), and optionally have the application fade the music in at the beginning of the ring and out at the end, and when it sounds good, click the Create button.

If your BlackBerry is connected to your Mac and in Mass Storage mode (it will appear as a mounted drive on your Mac desktop), the ringtone is automatically transferred to the correct location on the device. You can then select the new ringtone or add it to a particular person in your BlackBerry address book. A new playlist called BlackBerry Ringtones is created in iTunes so you can keep track of the tones you create.

All in all, the application does exactly what it's supposed to do, and it does it easily and quickly. For anyone who doesn't have the patience to create their own ringtones using iTunes and GarageBand, it's a perfect program.

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