LOS ANGELES — Hello hello?
Beatles fans can now set their cellphones to alert them to incoming calls with “Hello Goodbye,” take a call from IT support with “Help!” or signal a call from an angry partner with “We Can Work It Out” as the Fab Four’s music has become available for the first time as cellphone ring tones.
The group has licensed ring tones from its 27 U.S. and British No. 1 hits, from “Love Me Do” in 1962 through “Hello Goodbye” in 1967 to “The Long and Winding Road” in 1970, replicating the track lineup of the “1” compilation CD, which just surpassed 12 million copies sold in the U.S. since its release in 2000.
The 30-second ringtones, also downloadable to iPads and iTouches, are available exclusively through iTunes for $1.29 each — the same amount charged for downloading the entire song.
It’s the latest incursion of the group’s music into the digital realm after long being withheld from legal downloading. That ended just over one year ago, when the group’s catalog was posted on iTunes in November 2010.
Because only the No. 1 hits are available now, it looks like we’ll have to wait for the next round of ringtones for hopes of getting that wake-up call to “Good Morning, Good Morning” or “Good Day Sunshine,” a cellular sign-off in the evening with “Good Night” or a warning to unknown call numbers coming in at dinnertime, “Don’t Bother Me.”