easy to set up router with great parental controlss which allow you to isolate a device with specific settings, super use friendly with touchscreen controls and access via your device, great for family time and device free time with the touch of a screen!
What we’d love to see…
more ethernet ports, potential for a web dashboard and more on the “network health”
Overall, this is a great router which includes parental controls and allows you to easily turn on and off the internet. The parental controls differentiate this router from others on the market with the ease of a touchscreen or your device – all in one place and easy to use.
The Starry Station by Starry is a touchscreen wifi router that includes parental controls and simplifies how you use the internet. When I recently set it up – I had it out of the box and running in less than 10 minutes and that included adding all of my devices to the new networks. WiFi is fast – with good streaming and surfing quality much faster than my previous router. It also works with all types of internet including fiber optic, cable and includes built in WPA2 Encryption. The Starry Station is a triangle shaped router which stands on a side – the base is 3 inches wide and there is a fan behind it.
One of my favorite things about Starry Station is the ease of setup and the fact that I can have parental controls in the palm of my hand or by using the touch screen on the router. I loved that I could set one device, my 8 year old’s to be off from a specific period of time or even just block his access entirely if I wanted to either from the router or from the app. I also found that the speeds on the router were more true to what I paid for with Comcast compared to my previous router. I have a bit of an unusual house set up – and in the past have had a boost downstairs because for some reason I can’t always get good network signal. Although I did continue to use my wireless access point, it was easily reconfigured to Starry and gave me better and faster service than I had previously. We live in a media friendly home, and regularly stream Netflix, cable TV, surf the internet as well as having several smart appliances. Another bonus of the router was that it had the same name for the 2.4G as well as the 5G network, which meant that you didn’t have to remember as many passwords to login. Using the touch screen or my iPhone/iPad I was able to walk around the house and easily add new devices quickly! We had 10 devices online easily at a time and noticed no lags or slowdowns while using the router. We also had some Apple and Android devices as well to try to see if the device mix would change how the network performed and didn’t notice an appreciable difference. The router also includes a speaker and mic – for future voice control options which are not yet enabled. I can’t wait to see those enabled. It also includes guest access which is easily turned on via your device or touchscreen so you can choose who has access and who does not!
A bit about the parental controls – this by far was my favorite feature of the router. I loved that I could easily filter content, pause the internet (for one device or all) and limit access to specific apps using the app on my iPhone. This meant I could set screen time rules for specific devices, like my son’s iPad without having to worry about blocking my iPad or my husband’s devices. I also liked that I could set safe content and turn off access to social media all with the touch of a button. At our house we usually have #devicefree Friday nights where we try to turn off our devices and spend time together as a family. I always hated having to go upstairs to unplug the router so no one would try to “sneak” access to the internet – now with Starry it’s a simple tap of a button on my iPhone and the internet is off. The offline hours are great as well – they help to ensure you don’t stay up too late because it can automatically turn off the internet at a specific time (although you can override as necessary). I also liked the customer support I got when I needed it – I spoke with someone in the United States who took the time to help me answer my question about the wireless access point and ensured things were configured properly.
In terms of enhancements, I do wish the router had more ports on the back of it. There are only two ports – one for internet coming in and the other for internet coming out.. I did get a wireless bridge to give me more ports so I could plug in all my Ethernet devices in my office. I also noticed that the network health changed a lot – even when I was standing in the same place. It was nice in theory because I could see what devices were on the network easily. I would like to see a web based dashboard in the future just in case I didn’t always have access to my device and needed to tweak something a bit more than I could do with the touch screen.
Overall, this is a great router which includes parental controls and allows you to easily turn on and off the internet. The parental controls differentiate this router from others on the market with the ease of a touchscreen or your device – all in one place and easy to use. Plus, with the app you can turn on and off the internet even when you are not home. It was easy to set up and use, and I love knowing that my son is safe while online as we work on setting our digital boundaries but give him access to a tablet and computer for homework. RRP $250 USD on Amazon.
NOTE: A product was supplied by the company for review purposes, no other form of compensation was received, all opinions stated in the review are those of the author and have been offered honestly.The links in this post may contain affiliate links where The iMums will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on our link, this helps to support the costs of running this site and we appreciate your support.
Do you have a friend or relative who still has lots of home videos lying around on VHS tapes or on camcorder tapes? VIDBOX Video Conversion Suite could be the perfect gift for them. Tapes deteriorate over time and it becomes harder and harder to find ways to play them, so its important to get them transferred to digital formats or you may lose the content entirely. Instead of taking them in to be professionally copied (which can be cost prohibitive if you have a lot of tapes to transfer) you can convert them at home with VIDBOX Video Conversion Suite.
To use VIDBOX you need a VCR or camcorder that can play your tapes, and a Mac or PC. The Video Conversion Suite comes with a key to download the software or you can install it via the included CD-Rom. The VIDBOX little white box is the key to connecting your video output device to the computer. You wire it to your VCR/ camcorder via RCA to RCA cables (included) or RCA to S-Cable (not included) and connect it to your computer via the included USB cable. Once it is connected launch the VIDBOX software and follow the on screen instructions. The video will record as a digital file on your computer in real time as it plays on your VCR/ camcorder. Once the recording is finished you can preview it and save to iMovie or iTunes (on Mac).
Compatible Video Players: VCR (VHS, Betamax, S-VHS), camcorder (8mm, DV, mini DV, HDV, AVCHD), TV, DVD player, game console, TiVo, DVR and cable set-top box.
Operating System: Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard or higher
Available USB 2.0 or 3.0 port
Processor: Intel® Core2 Duo processor or higher
Memory: 1GB of RAM
Free Hard Disk Space: 15GB recommended
Operating System: Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista
Available USB 2.0 or 3.0 port
Processor: Pentium M 2.26 GHz, Pentium Core 2 Duo E6300 1.86GHz or higher, or AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual Core 3600+ or higher
Memory: 1GB of RAM
Free Hard Disk Space: 700MB for program installation and 10GB for DVD creation
The Video conversion suite includes software for both Mac and PC or you can buy Mac or PC only versions for slightly less. Available from VIDBOX.COM or Amazon RRP Suite $99.99 or PC or Mac only $79.99. Suite currently on sale for $89.99 on VIDBOX.Com.
If you would like to win a VIDBOX Video Conversion Suite please enter via the Rafflecopter widget below. A valid shipping address is required and winners must respond to email notification within 48 hours. a Rafflecopter giveaway
One of the cool features about the new MacBook Pros is that they can now to powered via a USB-C instead of needing a proprietary Mac charger. This opens up more possibilities for charging on the go. The new RazorPlatinum Powerbank from MyCharge has a built-in USB-C port and enough power to recharge a MacBook as well as USB-A port for your other devices.
The USB-C port delivers a 36W output and is able to fully charge a MacBook in 100 minutes. You can also charge any tablet, smartphone or other device via the RazorPlatinum’s standard USB-A port. You can recharge the RazorPlatinum via the MacBook 29 watt adaptor in just 2 hours, or use the included USB-C to USB-A adapter to charge it via a standard USB port.
This 13400mAh Lithium Polymer PowerBank is the most powerful in the myCharge lineup and the only one that can recharge a laptop. It has ultra fast charging and recharging. It measures 6.5 in x 4.8 in x 1.1 in and weighs in at under 1lb, making it very small and light for a battery of this capacity. Available from MyCharge.com and Best Buy for US$99.99. The Razor Platinum was one of our Holiday Gift Guide picks this year – featured in The iMums 17 Terrific Tech Gifts and to celebrate myCharge is giving one away to a lucky iMums reader.
If you would like to win a RazorPlatinum , please enter via the widget below. Winners will be emailed and must contact The iMums within 48 hours to claim their prize. This giveaway is open to to those with a valid US mailing address, and the prize will be shipped directly from myCharge. Please ensure you read and understand our Terms & Conditions. Good luck!
My 9 year-old son, Mr A, like many kids, LOVES Minecraft and especially loves playing with other kids. He plays multi-player games with his siblings and friends when they are together, and has been asking for a long time to play online. I have been concerned about potential safety issues connecting online with strangers, so I have been reluctant to allow him to play online. That was before we discovered Kid Club – a free moderated Minecraft Server especially for kids from Connected Camps. Kid Club is specifically for kids age 8-15 years and is a moderated server that I feel is a safe online space for him to connect with other kids who also love Minecraft.
I first discovered our sponsor Connected Camps earlier this year when they contacted The iMums to tell us about their Summer of Minecraft camps. It is an online learning platform that offers online Minecraft programs- summer camps, after school courses, online mentoring and special events; as well as access to safe, moderated Minecraft servers for kids. Connected Camps was founded by 3 girl geeks with a mission: to make coding and digital arts accessible and fun for all kids.
Mr A took Connected Camps Survival Camp in July this year and LOVED it so much he has already made me promise to sign him up again next year! After his camp he asked to join Kid Club. Because we had such a positive experience with the camp I was happy to let him join. Signing up was very simple and it took about 24 hours to get approved to join. You do need to provide a credit card number so they can check your identity, but it doesn’t cost anything. Since then he has become a regular Kid Club member. His favorite parts are that he can play with other kids outside his immediate family and friends, plus he loves to trade resources with other players in the bazaar. He’s happy because he can play Minecraft with other kids and I’m happy because I feel Kid Club is a safe place to let him share his passion for Minecraft with other kids.
Kids can use the Kid Club server for free play or they can join in structured activities to learn new skills and interact with other kids and counselors with similar interests. In just the next week there are over 20 Kid Club events on the calendar including carving giant pumpkins, architecture club, engineering club, carnival build, castle capture the flag and many more- all free !
For kids who want to learn more Minecraft skills Connected Camps also offers a variety of online Minecraft programs including topics such as coding, game design and engineering. They have after school programs, one on one mentoring, holiday courses and one- off workshops. These do have a fee, but I think they are very reasonably priced e.g. a 2hr Dungeon Design Workshop is $9.99
Reasons to love Kid Club
Safe, moderated, kid only server
Fun new events
Open daily from 12-6pm PST
Opportunities to interact with other Minecraft loving kids
Opportunities to try new things and learn new skills
Easy access to Minecraft workshops, courses and tutoring for players wanting to expand their skills (*fee for this)
For families looking for a safe online environment for their kids to play Minecraft with other kids I would highly recommend Kid Club. Not only is it moderated, safe and for kids only, but it’s free too !
NOTE: Connected Camps sponsored this article, but it is based on my family’s real experiences with the company and all opinions expressed in the article are my own.
The iMums is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to The iMums (amazon.com)