Great Plains Communications Residential Blog

Keeping Your Family Connected

Tag: Summer (page 1 of 2)

Tips to Keeping your Electronics Cool this Summer

We are in the middle of summer and the temperatures are staying hot and steady. Are you keeping your electronics cool through the heat? Extreme heat can be potentially detrimental to your expensive gadgets. Great Plains Communications has some tips on keeping not only your portable devices cool, but your home computer as well.

  1. Be mindful of where you leave your devices. It may sound like common sense, but maybe you needed to run into the store or class for an hour or two and you left your laptop on the back seat of your car. This kind of heat can cause major damage to the battery and other sensitive electronics. And if temperatures got high enough, it could even affect the connections between different components of your device.
  2. Consider your case. Just as black clothing attracts more sun, a black case on your phone or tablet could do the same. Instead of buying a whole new case, consider getting a foamed neoprene sleeve or cover for summer months. The foam (which is used for wetsuits) will not only add extra protection from clumsiness, but the material will also keep it cooler than most plastics.
  3. Watch your screen. It’s true that many e-readers are glare-free and can be used in the sun. However, when it isn’t in use, don’t let it sit out. Too much contact with sunlight can cause the LCDs in your screen to deteriorate and shorten the lifespan of your device.
  4. Don’t forget your home electronics. Just because your desktop computer is inside your home, doesn’t mean it isn’t at risk from heat damage. Make sure to keep electronics out of direct sunlight. Also, always leave room for airflow around your equipment and never cover any vents or fans. Most computers, routers, and other devices have vents in the back or on the side. If they are placed in tight areas, the air pumped through the vents will gradually become hotter and hotter, which could ultimately overheat your machine.

Take WatchTVEverywhere With You This Summer

It is officially the first day of summer! While you are busy enjoying the beautiful weather, or taking trips with family, don’t think you have to miss out on your favorite shows. Catch them all on your wireless devices with WatchTVEverywhere from Great Plains Communications. If you are a cable customer of ours and have access to an Internet connection, you can view Food Network, HGTV, ESPN and much more through your Roku, laptop, tablet, mobile phone and more.

 

The first step to getting your WatchTVEverywhere account is to register. You will need to go to www.watchtveverywhere.com and do the following:

Select Great Plains Communications from the list of TV providers in the drop-down menu and click on Submit

Click on “Register”

You will need two pieces of information to register: your account number and the correct spelling of the last name on the account.

You will then be asked to:

  • Provide a valid email address. This will be your user name.
  • Provide a password
  • Select a password reset question
  • Supply the answer to the password reset question
  • Click on Register

Check the email address you just provided. You will find an email message with your WatchTVEverywhere activation link. Click on the link to complete the registration process

You are done and can begin to enjoy your favorite channels!

If you have any questions regarding your Great Plains Communications cable service or accessing WatchTVEverywhere, please call our Customer Response Center at 1-855-853-1483.

Virtual Summer 2018

Stuck at work this summer? Dreaming of that beach vacation that won’t seem to plan itself? Great Plains Communications is taking a virtual summer trip and we are inviting you along. Enjoy our online promotion of FREE Installation on ANY (high-speed Internet, cable television, phone) new service through July 20, 2018.

Take a trip with us this summer and watch for a chance to win your own virtual reality headset through our social media sites later this month!

For more information on what services we provide in your area, call our Customer Response Center at 1-855-853-1483 and don’t forget to include the code “Virtual Summer” to receive FREE installation.

High-Tech Camping Gadgets You Won’t Want to Forget to Pack

It’s officially camping season! No matter if you camp in a tent, air-conditioned mobile home, by a lake or deep in the woods, Great Plains Communications has found some of our favorite high-tech camping gadgets you won’t want to forget this summer.

 

CampStove 2

Turn fire into electricity with the upgraded award-winning BioLite CampStove2. Portable size with the capability to boil 1 L of water in under 5 minutes, generate 5V of power through a USB output to charge your devices, and burns on “renewable biomass” such as sticks and twigs.

SteriPEN Adventurer Opti

There is nothing worse than forgetting or running out of water on a long hike. You could end up parched yet feeling taunted by nature as you walk by a stream or river. Using the SteriPEN Adventurer Opti, purify up to 8,000 liters to ensure safe drinking water.

PowerLight Bundle

A torch, flashlight, and lantern in one – the PowerLight Bundle can light a site up to 40 ft. It is also equipped with a powerful 4,400 mAh Li-Ion battery that can recharge from any USB source and also share power to any USB chargeable devices.

Oomph

Water is definitely a priority while roughing it in the woods, however coffee is often a close second for many. The Oomph is the ultimate coffee-to-go creating a pressure generated cup of jo in under 2 minutes.

Summer Internet Safety Tips for Parents

Summer break is quickly approaching and that means an abundance of free time for the children in your life. While there will be plenty of time spent outside, it is good to keep in mind some Internet safety topics to discuss with children to ensure their online experience is a positive one.

  1. Internet usage guidelines

Rather than telling them all the things they can’t do, have a conversation with your child about how long they are allowed online and what type of sites are OK or not OK. While you make the ultimate decision, show that you are listening to their opinions. Also discuss how to behave towards others when chatting, gaming, emailing, or messaging.

  1. The importance of privacy

While this depends on the age of the child, a simple rule for younger children could be that they should not give out their name, phone number or photo without a parent’s approval. Older children should be advised to be selective about what personal information they include on social networking, such as not including their address or telephone number on sites such as Facebook.

  1. Meeting online “friends”

The Internet can be a positive place for children to interact with other young people and ultimately make new friends. By discussing it ahead of time, your child is more likely to recognize if they’re talking to someone they shouldn’t be. This is a good way to keep the dialogue about Internet interaction between you and your children open.

Remember that the positive aspects of the Internet outweigh the negatives and that it is a wonderful educational and recreational resource. Let your child show you what they like to do online and discover it with them.

Don’t Get Caught in a Scam this Summer

While you may be ready to get away and relax this summer, credit card thieves are still working diligently to create convincing scams. Great Plains Communications wants to be sure that you enjoy your vacation to the fullest, without having to worry about scammers.

Pop-Ups

As you search through a multitude of websites, mapping out the best vacation for your family, beware of pop-ups. Some may look like they are from a recognizable source, with statements such as “Update Flash Player” or “Your AppleCare® needs updating” and “Call the number below.” DO NOT call a phone number on any pop-up. Be wary of any tech support unexpectedly contacting you, as many scammers will try to offer a “free security scan” – attempting to gain access to your computer by convincing you it is infected. If you are worried about the software on your computer, contact the company directly by opening a new window and going to their technical support. This way you will truly know you are speaking to someone from the company.

Email Scams

You have booked the hotels, picked your excursions, and now you wait for the confirmation emails. Your inbox feels overloaded with the price quotes that didn’t make the trip and hotels without a pool. This is the time to be extra careful when clicking through emails. We have included five steps to avoid taking the bait of a phishing scam, below.

2017 Summer Show Premieres

Summer premieres are on the horizon, and you won’t want to miss these new characters as their unique stories unfold. Jessica Biel returns to television in The Sinner, a murder mystery that will have you guessing. Midnight, Texas isn’t just about vampires and psychics, but what happens when the main character, Manfred finds himself among an array of both humans and supernatural beings, unknowing which are allies and which are not. You can find the trailers for these and other premieres below.

 

The Mist – June 22  (Spike)

 

The Bold Type – July 11  (Freeform)

 

Salvation – July 12  (CBS)

 

Midnight, Texas – July 25  (NBC)

 

The Sinner – August 2  (USA)

 

If you are not currently a Great Plains Communications cable customer and would like to learn more about what we offer in your area, please call our Customer Response Center at 1-855-853-1483.

Setting Up Parental Controls

Summer vacation is just around the corner. It may not feel like it with the weather we’ve had this week, but most schools have just about a month left. This means the kids will be looking to fill their time. Keep your family protected with parental controls. While Great Plains Communications knows that no system can take the place of monitoring what media your kids consume, parental controls can make it a lot easier. This is an easy way to make sure that kids aren’t exposed to mature programming, or even the titles. When a program or channel is blocked, the user must enter a 4-digit pin to access the channel. That way, you can still enjoy all programming, but in a secure way.

These controls are set up right through your remote and are very easy to configure. Blocks can be set by channel, rating, or even specific show titles. The control is in your hands.

Here are the steps to setting up parental controls:

  • Press the Menu key on your remote
  • Select the Home Icon
  • Select Setup
  • Then select Locks Setup
    • Once you are in the Locks Setup screen, you will be asked to choose a 4-digit pin.
    • Once your pin has been selected, you will be given the following options:
      • TV Rating – Blocking by TV Rating. *Note that you must block every rating you wish to control. This means if you block an R rating, you will also need to block “adult” programming.
      • Movie Rating – This only affects movie channels such as STARZ, Cinemax, and HBO.
      • Channel Locks – This will allow you to block specific channels.
      • Master Lock – Allows you to remove locks, bypass a lock, or change your pin.
      • Adult Titles – This removes titles from adult video programs. The guide will only display the words “adult movie.”

Just a few steps ensure your family’s safe viewing habits. We do want to point out that your pin is exclusive to you and we do not keep a record of your entry. If you do forget your pin, we can reset your settings, but you would have to reprogram your preferences. We suggest keeping your number in a safe spot so that you don’t forget it.

 

If you have any additional questions about the parental controls, you can call our Customer Response Center at 1-855-853-1483.

2015 GPC Summer Selfie Contest Winner

“Shout-outs to my bond for being a great date, Hometown Agency in Wauneta for the tickets, and GPC for sponsoring the concert. #GPCSummerSelfie”

That’s a wrap on our 2015 GPC Summer Selfie contest. We have our winner! Great Plains Communications would like to congratulate Nicole Kent of Benkelman, NE on winning a $250 Visa gift card and a selfie stick. When hearing she had won, Nicole responded:

“First, I would like to thank you for holding the Summer Selfie contest and for sponsoring the concerts at the Chase County Fair. I was very excited to get your message on Instagram! Thank you for everything you do for the area communities, and for choosing my photo as the winner!”

Keep a watch out for more Great Plains Communications promotions and help us in congratulating Nicole!

Happy Labor Day from Great Plains Communications!

The days are still warm, while the nights are starting to form a chill. There is just a bit more summer to be celebrated and the long Labor Day weekend invites you to do just that. No matter if you plan to travel with the family, grill out with friends or just relax in the fleeting Midwestern warmth, enjoy it. Great Plains Communications has teamed up with a few of our cable network channels to provide a little information on Labor Day, as well as some recipes and party tips to keep in mind this weekend.

 

Food Network: Beer Can Chicken on the Grill

 

Food Network: Smoky Black Bean Corn Salad

 

HGTV: 10 Outdoor Party Tips You Never Thought Of

Great Plains Communications hopes you have a safe and wonderful holiday weekend!

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