The break circle appears no matter what the occasion. It's a very annoying an unnecessary visual effect that I'm very certain is a bug. In previous versions, the break circle only appeared when... Wait for it.. You break blocks. (shocker) and by previous I mean 0.7.0. It honestly shocks me that no one has bothered to fix it, I don't see how enabling the circle 100% of the time is intentional, the transitions have been missing for quite some time. They use to fade in and out, but now they just rigorously pop out, furthermore suggesting that it's a bug.
I don't understand how this is unreproducible, unless you're not understanding the context of the situation. Watch any YouTube video, this happens all the time. Watching really old videos also shows the intentional function of the break circle.