A DESCRIPTION OF THE REQUEST :
The tray-icon has little use for end-users of Java applets. The main purpose of the tray-icon seems to be to open the Java Console but the vast majority of end-users will never want to open it. If they encounter a broken applet they simply move on to another website.
It seems to me that the Java Console is aimed at developers and end-users want a clean non-intrusive UI similar to that provided by Flash.
The key is to figure out who the target audience is for the tray icon and then ask ourselves whether the current UI meets our goals.
I am proposing that the tray icon should be hidden by default and allow developers to enable it using the control panel when they are debugging their applications. Furthermore developers or end-users can still use Tools | Java Console instead of the tray icon.
http://forums.java.net/jive/thread.jspa?messageID=271619 discusses this in more detail.
Tray-icon clutters UI without adding any value to end-users.
Currently with the new java plugin, tray icon is the only way to bring up java console on windows. We are in the plan to restore java console menu in browsers. Until then, tray icon will not be hidden by default.
Suggest adding items to the Windows Start menu for Java which would be easier for users to locate. See this spec: http://xdesign.sfbay.sun.com/projects/java/j2se/6.0/deployment/DesktopIntegration/6u23_desktop_integration.html