Research->Ringtone->Difference Between Melody Ringtone & Song Ringtone
This page provides information about Ringtone and Song Ringtone.
Melody & Voice
There are 3 major music files that are used in mobile phones. These are "melody ringtone" of melody group, and "song ringtone" and "voice ringtone" of voice group.
What is the difference between melody group and voice group? Instead of real sound, only performance information is recorded in the melody group file. On the other hand, waveform of the real sound is recorded in the voice group file. The figure below shows the difference between melody group and voice group.

Melody Group File
Performance data is included.

Voice Group File
Waveform data is included.

The above-mentioned difference corresponds to the difference between MIDI file and WAV file in personal computer.
The advantage of melody group file is that you can keep the file size small since it has only performance information. The weak point is that sound will be different according to the model of mobile phone since the built-in device of mobile phone is used for the tone of musical instrument.
The advantage of voice group file is that the recorded music will sound just the way it is basically in all models, but the sound will be slightly different according to the body of the mobile phone. The weak point is that the file size will be large. To cope with this file size problem, compression technique will be very important.

Voice Ringtone & Song Ringtone
When data transfer rate was not desirable with early mobile phones, melody ringtone was the mainstream. However, with the advancement of transmission rate and compression technique, voice ringtone and song ringtone of voice group are becoming the mainstream.
Difference between voice ringtone and song ringtone is decided by what is recorded in the file. Voice ringtone will include a voice message such as "you've got a mail" when you receive a call or an email. Song ringtone will include music. Generally, this music will include only the part of the music CD, approximately 30 seconds of it. Also, as for voice ringtone, the sound will be recorded by the compression method called ADPCM that is built in mobile phone. But as for song ringtone, compression method with higher efficiency is used.