Circle with Disney manages all of your
home’s connected devices. With Circle,
parents can filter content, limit screen
time and set a bedtime for every device
in the home.
Summer’s here and with the kids out of school, I feel like my constant challenge of trying to set healthy ‘on-line time’ habits just got so much harder. With all the extra free time on their hands, they seem to default to wanting to use that time online. So, I finally did it! I finally tried the online management system that’s been at the top of my research list: Circle With Disney.
I’ve been researching systems to manage my family’s on line time for over a year (yes, I’ve been dragging my feet). So, when I was offered a Circle With Disney to try out, I jumped at the chance. Additionally, many of you have been asking if I’ve tried it. Now I have and here’s what I found:
What It Is:
Officially, Circle With Disney is a way to manage all of your home’s connected devices. With Circle, parents can filter content, limit screen time, set a bedtime, view insights and more for every device in the home. Unofficially, it’s a parent’s new best friend! Here’s what you can control individually for each child using Circle With Disney:
- Set daily ‘on-line time’ limits
- Set daily time limits for individual apps
- Set bedtime and wake up times for device
- Set multiple “off times” when the device will not be able to get online
- Allow or restrict specific apps and websites
- Set up age specific filters
- Use the ‘Reward’ system to reward your child
- Connect “chore apps” like ChoreMonster to ‘Reward’ system
- Pause their screen time with your device
- Review where your kids have been using their time on-line
- Set up your child’s profile once and it applies to all their devices
Something I did not fully understand from checking out Circle on line is that, as I mentioned above, it’s set up to individualize devices. There is a “Home” setting for shared devices within the family, but the settings for each individual family member need to go with their device. For example, if you want your 13 year old to have 1 hour of on-line time a day, be off-line by 9:00 pm and only be able to access Minecraft, Disney, and Facetime, those settings will apply to the device he uses.
Seriously the easiest set up I’ve ever experienced! Circle wirelessly paired with our wifi so there was no software needed. I unboxed the contents, plugged the Circle box into an outlet within 5’ of my router, downloaded the app and followed the app instructions. That is it! The hardest part of it all was looking up our wi-fi password. Other than that, you need nothing else.
How much will all the above cost you? It’s actually surprisingly reasonable in my opinion – only $99 at Best Buy. That’s the only price you’ll pay. For the above features via wifi, you pay nothing extra, ever. It’s included! If you would like to be able to extend your child’s settings through 4G LTE, you can subscribe to Circle Go for a monthly fee (see below).
Circle Go sends the power you have with Circle to your child’s mobile device through 4G LTE and any other wifi they connect to. Subscribe to Circle Go for a fee of $9.99 a month and the settings you decide for your child’s device will go with them.
Our Family’s Final Thoughts:
The kids weren’t thrilled with the idea at first, but soon realized their online experience is no different than it was before (from what they can see). The difference is in the extra security I now feel when they are online and the lessening of arguments surrounding time allowed online. They know the device will go off at a certain time. No arguing is going to change that. They also love that they can earn more time and see that reflected immediately.
It’s great for me as a parent trying to establish healthy habits for my kids, but also as a way to correct MY unhealthy habits. I work online. It’s my office. The fact that my office is at my fingertips 24/7 makes it hard for me to stop working when I should. Setting up ‘off times’ for myself through Circle reminds me to put the phone down when I should have my full attention on the kids.
You can’t get more individualized control over your child’s online time than with Circle With Disney. It’s really like having parenting superpowers! Not many parents can say they have to power to literally pause the internet in a second or know exactly where your child has spent their time online. WIth Circle, you’re able to see your entire family’s online experiences all from the app in your hand. I’ve always told my kids I can see everything. Now I really can.
Disclaimer: The reviewer has been compensated in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card and/or received the product/ service at a reduced price or for free. As always, all opinions expressed are those of the writer and in no way influenced by companies or products mentioned within. “Disney Circle” along with all characters, logos and images are owned by them and used with permission. Post may contain affiliate links. Thank you for clicking through them! It helps keep this site here for you 🙂
How To Manage Your Family’s Online Time Like A Boss!