I know we can also use the word grain which conveys the same meaning and which makes more sense in my opinion. But I noticed photographers have a preference for the term 'noise'. What's got the word 'noise' to do with something that is visual not aural. Interestingly, same thing in French - the grain is called 'bruit' (noise).
A google search wasn't much helpful.
Also, is the term specific to digital photography (actually where I encountered the term) or film photography as well?