Circle with Disney – Peace of Mind in a Little White Box
For the last few months, I have been telling anyone who will listen about a new product I have been beta testing. Without fail, after listening to me rant and rave about how awesome it is, they’ve asked me where they can get one. I would have to explain that it was still in testing and not yet available to the public. Well, I am excited to announce that is no longer the case. Circle with Disney is now available for purchase at meetcircle.com and you won’t want to miss out on the opportunity to buy one for your home.
What is Circle?
Circle with Disney is a device that reimagines how families use the Internet. Managed through an iOS app, Circle with Disney is a tool that helps parents stay informed about their kids’ online activities and limit screen time on every device in the home, including smart phones, tablets, computers, and gaming consoles. Circle with Disney pairs easily with your home Wi-Fi and gives parents the ability to filter content, set a bedtime for devices, and even completely pause the Internet. Each user’s profile and settings can be completely customized based on age and parents’ preferences.
Here is a short video overview:
What Can Circle Do?
TIME LIMITS: Families can set daily Time Limits on any app or content category they want. With Time Limits, families can customize how much time their kids spend on each platform and set a total online time for the day.
FILTER: Families can set individual filter levels for each family member. Circle with Disney has four preset age-levels and allows for further customization by platform, app, website, and content category. Families can choose a filter that matches each user’s age and interests, filtering out inappropriate content.
INSIGHTS: Families can stay informed about where their kids spend their online time―by platform, category and website. Circle with Disney allows families to see a member’s total time spent online and the sites visited.
BEDTIME™: Families can create a BedTime™ for each family member and their devices. Simply set a sleep time, when the devices will disconnect from the Internet, and an awake time, for the morning when the devices will reconnect.
GUEST DEVICES: Circle with Disney recognizes when a guest joins the home’s Wi-Fi and can apply a family’s home settings to visitors’ devices.
BLOCK ADS: Circle with Disney can block ads for any user’s devices.
EVERY DEVICE: Circle with Disney knows every single device connected to a family’s network (smart phones, tablets, computers, gaming consoles) and gives families the ability to manage each.
For mobile devices, Circle Media Inc. has created Circle Go, a companion subscription that covers all iOS devices when they are outside the home, including use on 4G LTE. Circle with Disney Go delivers the same key features of Circle, but now for your family on the go. Circle Go will be available in early 2016.
What’s Up with the Disney part of Circle with Disney?
Additionally, through a licensing partnership with Disney, Circle also provides families with Disney entertainment that parents trust and children love. Circle with Disney will deliver a curated selection of Disney content including videos, blogs, gifs, emojis, music, games, characters and lots more through a unique experience called MyCircle.
Where can I get one?
What Do I Think?
I love my apple products and my kids love theirs. As the father to four kids, protecting them from the less savory parts of the internet and enforcing some general guide lines regarding technology usage in our house is a priority. For the last couple of years, I’ve been looking for a product that would allow me to set time limits on their usage and give me better all around parental controls. I had some luck with parental controls though felt generally handcuffed by some of the limitations built into the Apple operating system when it came to parental controls. And, I couldn’t find anything that effectively let me enforce time limits. I had all but given up when I was asked to participate in the beta testing of a new little device called Circle.
I am not exaggerating when I say it is EXACTLY the device I had been looking for. Whether it was controlling content, reviewing usage, setting time limits, instituting “no electronics” times or taking away internet access as a form of discipline, this device could do it all.
Setup couldn’t have been easier, and after setup I was able to control my home network from anywhere in the house, across town at work or even on the other side of the state. We also switched internet providers while beta testing the device and the switch was seamless for Circle.
This device gives parents peace of mind and a whole tool box full of possibilities for overseeing and controlling their children’s internet activities. Monitoring and restricting our kids’ unfettered access to the dangerous side of the internet had gotten harder and harder over the last decade. In the past a simple program on your home desktop was sufficient. But now, with smart phones and x-boxes and play stations, laptops, iPads and more, it’s harder to know that you’ve taken the steps necessary to protect your kids. Circle does all this and much much more, and you don’t have to be an expert to use it.
I am excited for what this product already does, and I can’t wait to see where it goes in the future. Download the app today and go to meetcircle.com to buy the device. Whether you are a computer nerd or a grandparent who misses the days of typewriters and corded phones, you won’t be disappointed!
** I was provided with the Circle device as part of the beta testing process. Other than that, I have received no compensation or anything else in exchange for this review other than the satisfaction of finally finding a product that does exactly what I need! Parts of this article have been taken from the official press release from Circle (no sense reinventing the wheel – pun intended)