I know it’s a busy season and time is short. But I’ve got several things we’ve been using and loving that I wanted to tell you about. So for the next week or so, I’m sharing quick reviews. Today, meet Circle by Disney…
We love the internet. Matter of fact, Andrew and I both use it to make a living, feed our family, and to keep us informed and entertained. But we fully acknowledge that the internet isn’t all cute cat videos and blogs about adorably messy families (waving).
Andrew had our internet locked down with Covenant Eyes and something with DNS in its name. It was mostly effective, but it also meant that, half the time, I couldn’t use the internet either. Because I am technologically challenged and I find i.p. addresses, l.m.n.o.p. addresses, and servers frustrating.
Enter: Circle. We hooked this bad boy up, created different levels of internet blocking, and assigned every single device in our house a name and a level.
What We Love:
- It really works. It’s a tight filter and we’re satisfied that we’re reasonably protected from unsavory internets.
- It’s easy to unblock a site… and reblock it. Quick taps on the apps on our phone, no i.p. addresses to enter. Simple.
- We can track every device, every site visited, alla time.
- If any device logs into our wireless system (which is password protected), it’s automatically filtered through our Circle. And I receive a text notifying me that there’s a new device. So if you sit in my driveway to borrow my wifi, I know you’ve been there. 😉
- We received text notifications if the Circle goes offline or is unplugged.
- Circle lets us know how long we’ve all been on the internet and what we’ve been doing while we’re there. Convicting and helpful!
- One tap on the Pause button and the internet is off for the whole house. (Real Life: Our kids don’t have access to internet on any device but the computer in the kitchen, so this feature isn’t useful… yet. But another year or two and I’m gonna love it.)
- We can use it to set time limits on apps that use the internet.
What We Would Change:
- The history provided by Circle only gives a short url. Sometimes, a longer url would be helpful to determining if a site is a good choice.
- Only manageable with an iphone.
- I wish it would let me set time limits on ANY app.
- It was a bit tricky to get it to work with the boys’ Kindle Fire. We had to allow amazon.com so their kindles would connect to the server. There were a couple of websites we use often that go through several secondary sites to deliver content. We had to un-filter all of those secondary sites in order to continue usage.
- Can we just carry our Circle with us everywhere, please? (HOLD THE PHONE: Perhaps we can?!?!)
- Purchased: January 2016
- On a scale of 1 to 9 footprints, 9 being the highest, we give this an 8 feet rating.