While iOS has always supported the use of various ringtones for different callers, it has not supported ability to use a tone of your choosing to notify you of a text message – until now, that is! Data found in iOS 5 Beta 3 shows that iOS 5 might finally bring us this ability.

According to a new report, not only will iOS 5 support the use of text message alert sounds, it will also allow you to set custom alerts for emails, new voicemail, sent email, tweets, calendar and reminder alerts, and possibly more. This is great news for those of you that, like me, have grown tired of Apple’s boring default tones for these things.

It actually seems a bit odd to describe this as news, as cell phones have had this functionality for a very long time, starting with the “dumb phones” of years past. Nevertheless, it’s better to come late to the party than not come at all, right Apple?

In their defense, I’m really much more interested in Apple creating a revolutionary and amazing user interface and app infrastructure than I am in them supporting all the tiny little features some people might expect, such as custom notification tones.

Accessing and setting custom tones is easy – just fire up Settings.app, click the Sounds menu, and you’ll see the options for changing the text tone, voicemail tone, and others. Clicking one of these sub-menu’s brings up a list of all of your iPhone’s ringtones, including the one’s you’ve made yourself, and also includes a button that directs you to a ringtones store on iTunes.

Of course, one might argue that Apple’s limiting of tone options on the iPhone has assisted, to some extent, in the cult status of the iPhone – its default ringtone, text tones, etc have become easily recognizable symbols of the iPhone, and have made for some interesting experiences while standing in line at the Apple Store!

I’ve already got a good idea of what I’m going to be changing my tones to – what about you?

 

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