For many years, experienced Microsoft operating system users have been trying to solve the mystery – why when a new device with Windows 10 or Windows 8 turns on, they do not emit the familiar welcome sound that many users loved in previous versions, such as Windows 7 and XP.
Jensen Harris, the director of the Windows User Experience team, revealed in a recent video why the company mutes startup sound on Windows 8 and Windows 10 by default.
The welcome sound is still present in Windows 10, but is disabled by default. According to former Microsoft employee Jensen Harris, the welcome sound was turned off because modern Windows devices work in a different environment – they can be used anytime, anywhere, and the start-up sound can interfere with a meeting or other activity when trying to restart the computer.
When Microsoft started working on modern devices and operating systems, they optimized the platform for different use cases with a focus on mobile. One team at Microsoft was busy porting Windows to ARM processors, while another team started developing a touch tablet user interface.
As Microsoft chose to focus on hybrid devices, laptops, and mobile-centric use cases, the development team realized that the welcome beep on every reboot can be annoying and inconvenient. For example, if you are working late at night in your bedroom, it would be far from ideal to open your laptop so that it plays a loud welcome sound.
One of the things we did was figure out how and where people use their PCs. Most of the PCs sold were laptops or netbooks, and this percentage increased every year. With mobility came new considerations — computers were used in places that would have been very unusual when Windows 3.1 was released, such as in the bedroom or on the couch. ”
Ultimately, the welcome sound was turned off by default to prevent awkward situations when opening the laptop. However, Microsoft hasn’t removed this setting entirely, and users can still enable the welcome sound if desired.