My house guests are constantly on their electronic devices

I have many customers asking what is the best way to get their house guests (sons, daughters, grand kids, etc.)  to stop them from using their electronic devices (Android Phones, iPhone, Laptops, etc.) in their home, such as:

  1. They are constantly on it when they are here.  What can I do?
  2. They are on it when they are supposed to be sleeping..
  3. I am having a conversation with myself.
  4. And many more. 

We live in a technological world and I can give some advice about what to do about it in your home or not in your home.  This is a multifaceted question that does have a few simple or complicated answers.  but I will try to explain it as simply as I can.

Wireless Home Internet:

  1. If your guests do have access or are connected to your home wireless internet and not connected to a cell phone data (AT&T, Verizon, etc.) plan.
    1. Easy – You can do any of this easily before they arrive, during their stay, before they go to sleep, or when you would like their attention:
      1. Disconnect the “Power Plug” from the wireless router (Linksys, Netgear, etc.), DSL (Frontier, CenturyLink, Windstream, etc.), cable internet box (AT&T, Comcast, etc.), satellite internet box (Dish Network, Hughes Net, etc.), Fiber internet box (AT&T, CenturLink, Trailwave, etc) and/or any other internet boxes.
      2. If your guests ask about getting access to the internet.  Just tell them “I don’t have internet”, “The internet is down”, or some other excuse..
      3. Reconnect the “Power Plug” when they leave the home, when somebody in your home really needs the internet (Your discretion), or when you need the internet. 
    2. Advanced – If you don’t want to disconnect the “Power Plug” and just want to restrict certain devices (people).  This can be done, if you want to learn more about technology or are tech savvy.
      1. Access your router through any web browser, in the search bar or url, type:
        1. 192.168.1.1
        2. 192.168.254.254
        3. 10.0.0.1
        4. 192.168.0.1
        5. If these IP addresses don’t work.  Check with your ISP (Internet Service Provider), contact the manufacturer of your wireless router, or search the internet.
      2. Username and Password:
        1. Admin = password
        2. Password = password
        3. This is a generic user name and password.  If that username and password does not work.  It should be on the wireless router or check with the manufacturer’s website.
      3. Go to Settings, then to Parental Controls.
        1. Device = Name of the device, such as, Android
        2. MAC (Media Access Control) = Specific address of the device
        3. Everything should be self explanatory, but if not check with the website of manufacturer.
      4. Apps or Games already installed on the device:
        1. There is not much you can do or block without taking away the device.

Cell Phone Data Plan (Inside/Outside of the Home):

  1. If your paying for the data plan.  You can:
    1. Access your data plan through your cell phone carrier website.
    2. Click on devices.
    3. Click on Manage Messaging/Data
    4. Turn off or unselect “Data” and “Save Changes”
    1. Turning off the “Data” to the device blocks the user from linking to the internet, but it does not block them from using the device when an app or game is installed on the device.

I have one customer that had an ingenious idea that clearly works at dinner time.

  1. She allowed her guests to use their devices till dinner time.  When her guests were at the dinner table with their devices.  She passed a basket around for the guests to put their devices into the basket to enjoy the dinner and to socialize.  When dinner was over, she allowed them to pick up their devices from the basket.

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