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181

Don't do it. A lot of people (myself included) open many new tabs rather than browse in a single one. If I suddenly have a noise coming from a tab: I have to find the offending tab When I do find it, I'm annoyed with whichever company / site it is I then close the tab There is no good reason to do on a website. In an app, I would still argue against ...


62

Don't do this! Jacob Nielsen listed this in his article "Readers' Comments on the new Top-10 Design Mistakes" where it is being called "intrusive" and "highly annoying".


49

If your app loads instantly, then don't add it. Especially not when it creates (forces) an completely unnecessary delay. Splash screens just serve the same purpose as loading spinners: giving the user the reassurance that their action was seen and is having an effect, plus subjectively shortening the time it takes to load.


44

Answer this first: Is the user expecting it? To cite some actual recommendations rather than opinions, the punkchip article Autoplay is bad for all users is 3 years old but as valid as ever. The article should be read in it's entirety, but quotes the W3C’s specification for accessibility (WCAG 2.0). There is a small note in one of the audio criterion, ...


36

The Microsoft Office suite appears to have put a greater emphasis on Add-Ins. For default installations, none are included hence the splash screen only stays up for a very short time. However, for Office power users, they may have many Add-Ins (especially enterprise users who develop their own custom AddIns) which will significantly slow the startup time ...


27

Management is principally seeking brand recognition. The same desire drive Coca-Cola to put their logo on everything they can buy. If the app, when running, has a visible logo of the product or company, then you should be able to make the case that brand recognition has been served. You could probably make the case that it's better served that way, since ...


26

While I concur with all the others who recommend not doing this, there are some (few) products where start-up sounds makes sense: Hardware boot, where the Mac startup chime and the IBM POST beep codes both signify that nothing has gone wrong with the hardware (or, alternatively, that something has gone wrong with the hardware). Depending on the hardware ...


24

There are situations in which adding a delay will help in building a 'trust factor'. While the conventional UX wisdom dictates that faster feedback is better, sometimes, it is better if you slow down the thing to a level at which the user can imagine the things happening. Here is a Hacker news thread touching upon the same conversation: Locksmith gets less ...


20

I am very surprised this comic hasn't been mentioned in an answer already. Admittedly, the question is asking about a short delay and these sources come from the era when every 'hip' website had a 'super-cool' animation which wasted 30+ seconds of your life (and bandwidth) for no good reason. Courtesy of The Oatmeal (crude humor warning) and idea inspired ...


18

It's all about expectation and convention / consensus, also in some respect it's about courtesy to your user, and not irritating them. Web Pages - No, never. The experience of opening web page which plays a sound, is widely accepted as negative. You will be hard pressed to find a popular web page/app that does this, Generally this consensus has been ...


16

You might try giving him an example based in the real world. Choose one: 1) Go to a store that let's him get right inside and finish his business. -or- 2) Go to a store that requires him to stop and listen to the sales guy standing in front of the store, telling him how awesome the store is that he's about to enter before being allowed to enter. If he ...


15

Ask them what business objectives having a splash screen fulfills or how it enhances the main purpose of the website. A website should be subordinate to its business objectives (I'm using business objectives as a general term here, meaning overall objectives for the site). If you can get your client thinking in those terms, it'll make your client ...


12

If your computer is slow/the application is taking too long to load, you have the option to minimize or close the launch of the application. It is all about making the user feel in control at all times. Most of the time the user has no control if he launches the application, look at adobe suit, the applications take a while to load and there is nothing you ...


11

Good question. As you stated, a very subjective one, however we're all users and our opinions all matter :) In my opinion, no matter what application I'm running, I would rather see a loading screen come up immediately rather than wait 'X' seconds to see one. I'm a little curious as to why your delayed splash screen would be less flashy (is it because your ...


11

Use logic (like VirtuosiMedia suggests) or use cold, hard data: A/B test the site with and without the splash screen. Then show the client the bounce rate. Google Website Optimizer is great for this.


11

I'll answer the question from a slightly different angle... The intention would be - evoking emotions on the user - make the brandname "stick" I think that's what needs the focus. There's two issues here: evoke emotion Sound can certainly evoke emotion. However, in the context of a user trying to accomplish a task, what are the emotions they'd ...


11

Checkboxes should always be shown in the affirmative, so you shouldn't use "Don't show this on startup". You could however use "Hide this on startup" as an option that doesn't have the checkbox filled, which is what I would suggest. The action that someone will be thinking is more along the lines of "I want to hide this screen", so the action should ...


9

The goal of this sound is to associate the brand with the listener's experience on the site. The risks of this going wrong seem to outweigh the benefits. First, the person ended up on your site hopefully through a conscious decision. So you aren't giving the user any new, useful information by playing a sound. Meanwhile, there are plenty of scenarios where ...


8

It is a carryover from arcade games. When the users insert their coins, it is undesirable to have the game begin right away (especially when the coin slots were typically at knee level). They served other purposes as well: One of the ways I like to do this is with an attract loop. This was made popular by arcade games that needed to keep changing ...


7

Simple. People hate them.


6

Turn lemons into UX Lemonade. Use those 1-3 seconds to make your customer happy. Fade on a pun, and then fade it away and show your app. The user will smile going into your app every time (assuming it wasn't repetitive). I couldn't quite remember how to throw a boomerang, but eventually it came back to me. I was going to look for my missing watch, but ...


6

How about no splash screen? Splash screens are annoying. They embody the "I'm the most important program here" mentality (hey, look at me, I'm loading, yay!). If you must make a splash screen, please please pretty please: Don't make it obstruct other windows that have focus. Make it simple and elegant and lite. If your splash screen appears after 2 ...


6

Discuss with them how search engines mean that people no longer typically enter your site via the home page, instead they will increasingly land on individual pages within the site instead that were relevant to their search. If they have an existing site show them the trends in their own analytics. They thus need to balance the returns on their budget from ...


5

One thing you forgot to mention was what kind of splash screen is the client wanting? Does he want one of the vapid "welcome to x" intros that were so popular once upon a time (and that they may seem to recall being vogue at one point in time)? If that's the case, then you're hearing a lot of relevant feedback that is often echoed in User Testing. (see ...


5

Assuming it isn't pure html, it makes your website useless on iphone/ipad/non-flash mobile devices.


5

Is it possible to have a fast, static splash screen be displayed for 1-3 seconds with the word 'loading...', followed by the more informative but slow loading splash screen with a progress bar? Best of both worlds - quick response initially followed by more detailed information.


5

I wouldn't say screens with instructions are evil. There are of course some disadvantages of using them, namely that the user is not allowed to use the application right after it is launched for the very first time, but this only means that when the UI does not need any explanations, you shouldn't include these, as they do more harm than profit. Every time ...


4

I know there is advice (and very good advice at that) to generally not have startup/welcome screens in software. I'm not sure I agree with that advice. Your website, application or game's initial state is one of the most important things to get right. And by initial state I'm talking about the first launch, where there may be no user data yet, or ...


4

As much as I generally hate About.com, I must prescribe to the opinions here: Pros and Cons of Adding Sound to Web Pages. Even if it is a little dated with its 'Invalid HTML 4.01' commentary! "You should always be careful when you use sound on web pages. After intrusive advertising, sound that turns on automatically and cannot be turned off is one of ...


4

I agree with other posters that you shouldn't have a splash screen for an instantaneous start-up. A splash screens is an admission that the program is frustratingly slow to load. However, if your management still insists on it, a suggestion is to load the splash screen over the initial window and immediately fade it out, taking no longer than two seconds to ...



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