Nokia launches contest to replace iconic ringtone

Back in the days before polyphonic ringtones arrived – way, way back before Crazy Frog burst onto the scene – there was one ringtone that seemed to be everywhere. No matter what country you were in, no matter what phone you owned; you might have heard it at the airport, or on TV, or even far off in the distance, carried on the breeze…

Na-na-na-na, na-na-na-na, na-na-na-na-naaaa.

Exceptionally annoying to some, delightfully familiar to others, there’s no doubt that the little ditty that came to be known as the Nokia Tune is one of the most ubiquitous and well known jingles of the last two decades. Having first been introduced in 1994, it’s since been updated numerous times (including a pseudo-futuristic version that made a slightly cheesy cameo in the 2009 movie Star Trek).

Despite all the press coverage in recent months about Nokia’s declining market share, the Nokia Tune is still heard over one billion times every day. Today, Nokia has announced a global competition to compose the next Nokia ringtone, offering a $10,000 (USD) prize for the winning entry.

To enter the competition, you’ll need to register at http://nokiatune.audiodraft.com, where visitors can also vote on their favourite entries in the contest. The five entries with the most public votes will automatically qualify for the final round, and a further five will be selected by a panel of judges; from these ten, the judges will select the top prize winner, while five runners-up will win $1000 each, and have their ringtones available to download from Nokia’s web store.

The closing date is October 2 2011, so be sure to start putting together those annoying jingles soon.  

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39 Comments

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I do like that Windows Phone sounding one at the end of that video.

On my Windows Phone I either use one of the Microsoft ones, like Silk, or currently the Turrett song from Portal 2 LOL

The title is a bit misleading. The contest is to create a new version of the Nokia tune, not composing a completely different one to replace it.

Bioran said,
The title is a bit misleading. The contest is to create a new version of the Nokia tune, not composing a completely different one to replace it.

This, but then the title won't sound sensational. None of the main gadget blogs reported this correctly. No company will throw away such a strong brand identity soundmark but then again stranger things are happening at Nokia since Feb 11.

this is exactly what's wrong with the 800lbs gorilla that is nokia. sure they will have their ringtone in the end. but no phone to put it on, because by that time their company have already gone under while they were too busy focusing on the ring-freakin-tone contest.

what a pathetic loser. and they should know they deserve it.

The site clearly states that the tune will be shipped on future phones "next to" the standard Nokia tune (as a choice).

They've got one of the most recognizable tunes (Sony Ericsson's tune is a distant second). Kind of silly to ditch such a strong "brand."

That man has the most difficult job, who has to listen through all of them and choose the best.

It's like, when you thought Nokia Tune cannot possibly become any more annoying, Fruity Loops newbies around the world join forces to create Ultimate Sh**tiest Nokia Tune ever.
Well I mean if they want to refresh iconic ringtone to accompany new WP7 devices, then let original WP7 sound designer do the thing, instead of trying to dig through all sorts of lame 'dubstep' and alike remixes with pumped up bass that won't sound any good on the phone.

jasonon said,
all of the contest submissions sound awful
How about mine?
"Ding dong bing bong (pause) chica mica thip thip (repeat) Danaa!"

Ambroos said,
I really like the one you can here right here (at 1:15), sounds like a giant orchestrated version of the Nokia Tune, gives it some epicness

http://youtu.be/9epusoNc1tE?hd=1&t=1m16s


I think the less attention wh*re ringtone is, the better. The one in contest promotion video (that resembles WP7) pretty much does the thing, but could be a bit different and maybe even more minimalistic.

No, just too cheap to do so.
Microsoft got Brian Eno doing windows sound bites, why can't Nokia ask their generous partner for some of the action..

GreenMartian said,
No, just too cheap to do so.
Microsoft got Brian Eno doing windows sound bites, why can't Nokia ask their generous partner for some of the action..

Well, you lack vision. This is to create momentum for their next line of phones. Everyone + dog has now read about this competiotion on multiple sites by now and have gathered interest around the world. It is marketing for $15k...

Scorpus said,
The new Nokia ringtone will never be able to replace the classic original

You know I think the same. I'm not a traditionalist by any means, but I swear Nokia is committing some form of corporate suicide (in general, not because of this). I get that they're trying to re-image themselves, but they're literally taking everything that made them unique and recognisable, and stripping it away.

Within the next 3 years, Nokia will either be a hollow shell of a company failing like Palm, or a division of Microsoft. I called it here.

Scorpus said,
The new Nokia ringtone will never be able to replace the classic original

Of course not. It's impossible to make a more annoying ringtone.

Majesticmerc said,

You know I think the same. I'm not a traditionalist by any means, but I swear Nokia is committing some form of corporate suicide (in general, not because of this). I get that they're trying to re-image themselves, but they're literally taking everything that made them unique and recognisable, and stripping it away.

Within the next 3 years, Nokia will either be a hollow shell of a company failing like Palm, or a division of Microsoft. I called it here.

@Majesticmerc...Well....They are not replacing the Nokia Tune; they are simply doing a variation on the original, just as you saw in the video. So, it will still be recognizable as the Nokia Tune.

Is the last one a Windows Phone? The mix of the Nokia tune with the Windows Phone influences is neat. It demonstrates attention to detail which is very important.

wolftail said,
Is the last one a Windows Phone? The mix of the Nokia tune with the Windows Phone influences is neat. It demonstrates attention to detail which is very important.

How about windows 7 boot sound ?