Jensen Harris, the former Director of Program Management for the Windows User Experience team, explains in a new video the history of startup sounds in computers and what had happened to the Windows startup sound. The startup sound is no longer a part of Windows starting in Windows 8.
You may remember that older Windows version had their unique startup music that was played once the OS finished its boot sequence. That was since Windows 3.1 and ended with Windows 7, making Windows 8 the first "silent" release.
Harris names the number of reasons of the startup sound removal. The main reason is development of Windows on ARM and the increasingly mobile use of PCs. The company has begun monitoring how people use their computers, Harris said, with more people using laptop computers like laptops in multiple locations. Mobility came with other considerations. Also, the company began planning for the Surface platform, and that assumption shifted primarily to mobile devices when the team began porting the OS to ARM-based hardware.
Watch the video here:
Harris also mentioned that "a really bad feature for a device designed to be used in a person’s most private and intimate spaces at any time of day and night.", citing his personal experience of not wanting to open his MacBook at night while watching over his sleeping newborn daughter. This incident gave him an idea that the sound should be removed from the OS.
Harris says he later began to regret removing sound from the operating system. Microsoft actually attempted to bring back the Windows 8 startup sound at one point. However, the Windows Fundamentals team, which was optimizing the operating system's boot time, had already gotten rid of all the code needed to play this sound at boot, so the sound was permanently removed of faster startup speeds. Harris promises he’d share the startup sound initially created for Windows 8 version of the in an upcoming video.
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