Instructions for 23andMe Users Still on “Old Experience”

23andMe announced a transition to a “new experience” in October 2015 after their settlement with the FDA.   The transition included differing services and a web redesign, and began in early November, 2015 with completion promised by the end of the year.  Unfortunately, they never indicated which year.

Since that time, some accounts have been transitioned, but older accounts, meaning accounts that had tested prior to the issue with the FDA, remain on the “old experience,” with diminished functionality. In case you’re counting, that’s about 7 months.

Questions remained about what information would be provided to customers who tested prior to the FDA order that stopped 23andMe from providing customers with the health information, and whether or not those customers would be required to upgrade.

Earlier this week, 23andMe announced new tools for their “new experience accounts” which made those of us stuck in the “old experience” feel like even less valued customers, to say the least, and trust me, I’m being kind here.  One would think that 23andMe would have focused all of their efforts on transitioning all of their customers before providing new tools for some.

Today, I received this e-mail telling me that my account is scheduled to be transitioned by….wait for it….the end of….August. Yes, August, I think that’s August this year, although it’s important to note that they don’t specify a year.

This is Memorial Day weekend, so maybe by Labor Day. Seriously?  Wow…that’s service!

23andMe Transition

23andMe Transition2

23andMe Transition3

This e-mail does include valuable information regarding the results of the more robust health information that was provided to customers prior to the FDA shutdown that occurred in November 2013.  Our results will be available as a pdf file in an archive.  It’s important for legacy 23andMe users to note that selections made now will reflect what is actually archived and cannot be changed later.

You can read more detailed information here.

However, you must make your selections by June 2, 2016 in order for 23andMe to be able to transition your account by the end of August (no year indicated), so don’t delay. June 2 is only 6 days away.  If this makes you feel like “hurry up and wait,” you’re not alone.

Assuming 23andMe actually is able to comply with this promised transition date, that will be roughly 10 months from the beginning of the transition process, which was supposed to be complete 8 months ago. To put things in perspective, I could have gotten pregnant, gestated a full-term child and given birth in this amount of time. Just saying.

46 thoughts on “Instructions for 23andMe Users Still on “Old Experience”

  1. Loved your comment re what you could do in that amount of time. LOL!

    You have really been busy the last few days with all these changes. Hope you are still giving yourself rest time.

  2. And they are now silent about the transition for international customer, who could have been transitioned anytime since there was never an FDA issue for us.
    At that speed, I think they must be doing this manually – hired a bunch of students maybe? It is obvious that they ran into problems with their database management. Good thing the DNA analyses are contracted out…

  3. I tested post FDA shutdown, but pre FDA approval. I’m only interested in the genealogy content. I transitioned some time ago. The former site was more mobile friendly. It displayed well on a phone or tablet. How many of us rarely even turn on a laptop or desktop computer. I wish their new, improved site had a better mobile user interface. Maybe even an app. All three DNA testing companies could improve the quality of the post test user experience. I know some people who tested are only interested in the medical reports, others the ethnicity information, but for me and I’m sure a lot of your other readers, I took the test to help break down the brickwalls and trace my ancestry as far back as possible. I have succeeded in some areas beyond my wildest expectations and in others am making slow, steady progress.


    Maybe you could devote a post to what users would imagine their perfect user interface to look like. What features should be included at a bare minimum. A chromosome browser for example. After a comment period, the results could be sent to the testing companies directly. Surely they would value our input? Why not dream big.

    • Last fall, we compiled and presented a list of desires to both Family Tree DNA and Ancestry. Unfortunately, since 23andMe was in the midst of the transition, we didn’t know what the new product would look like, so they didn’t get a list.

  4. I haven’t received an email yet, thanks for the heads up!

    This does not seem customer oriented at all. Does anyone working for 23andMe actually use the service?

  5. At least you all have been given a date for transition. There is no letter, promise of end-of-August, or deadline of 2 June for me. just the same vague promise about “soon”. Oh well. 🙁

    • Me too. But they have a link for me to update my ethnicity information. Why is that? I took the test, in part, so 23andme could tell ME what my ethnicity information is. Now they want me to tell them? What’s up with that?

  6. I, too, lost both my mother (and my sister) to Parkinson’s and dimension. I tested at all three venders, but only tested my sister at Family Tree. Then family tree changed the raw database so that the segments with Parkinson’s information were deleted. I would like to compare my DNA with my sisters I frank hope that we do not share the sequence there and/or the predictions would be different. The prediction for me was not an elevated risk for Parkinson’s, but a somewhat higher risk for Alzheimer’s. Do you know anything about those segments of DNA being released by family tree as well as 23andme, in the future.

    Margaret Kastner

    On Friday, May 27, 2016, DNAeXplained – Genetic Genealogy wrote:

    > robertajestes posted: “23andMe announced a transition to a “new > experience” in October 2015 after their settlement with the FDA. The > transition included differing services and a web redesign, and began in > early November, 2016 with completion promised by the end of the year. ” >

  7. Glad you received a email (lucky you!) . . . unfortunately, no such luck here; but then, I’m in Canada, where they also paused the research program some time ago . . . (sigh).

  8. Likewise – no e-mail yet, promised date, no deadline. Thanks, Roberta, for posting this. You said exactly what needs to be said, and said it VERY well.

  9. I think it just a late April fools joke. I won’t be holding my breath or checking in regularly in August to see if they keep their word this time. I wasted to much time last around.

  10. Spare a thought for those of us in countries that 23andme arbitrarily decided not to provide health data to, E.G. Australia and most of the test of the world.

    The really insane part of this decision is that the FDA has no jurisdiction outside of one country, the United States of America. In other words every other country should have been the first to be offered health reports, not the last.

    Strange how even a company which by definition is involved in servicing the entire human race worldwide can’t shake off the inwards looking, inaular, self-obsessed attitude that is all too common with American companies.

    • Do like the rest of us did when it was not available – spend 5$ at Promethease…
      No point in bashing the US companies. After all, it is the only place in the world where you can get tested.

      • Wrong. There is

        Already did the Promethease thing but that still doesn’t address the illogic of denying the whole world health reports except the one country that the FDA has jurisdiction over. Perhaps if you were affected personally you would understand how frustrating it is to be treated as second class humans by Anerican companies.

  11. I honestly feel a bit ripped off by 23 and me. My kit was processed in record time. Seriously from the day they received it till the day the results were in was less than 3 weeks. I tested and got my results a month or so ago. They have put me on the “old” experience. So I can see the tools that were once available but am unable to use. Most of my matches are completely shut down. I can only see the % and their haplogroup, can’t send them a message or invite or even see their name. And honestly something seems very off overall. My kit was processed so fast I wonder if there was any time givin to do it properly.

  12. I’m not sure why anybody is in a rush to be transitioned. I havn’t been able to use 23andme at all since my account was changed. In particular, I can no longer find a chrmosome browser anywhere on the site. They do show what looks like a screen shot of a chromosome browser results, but I can find no tool that will indicate the start and end locations or cM number. Also, questions now addressed to 23andme no longer receive any response…at least mine don’t. I’d rather stick with the old syystem, if I could.

  13. You convey my every sentiment of utter frustration… SO WELL!!!!
    Thanks for putting this out here so clearly.

  14. I got my email from 23andMe today, May 28th

    For me the deadline is June 9th. No big deal, but why a different date?

  15. That’s about as quick as the promised Family Tree Maker update which hasn’t happened!

  16. I’m concerned what will happen to all those messages with the matches who have shared genomes. I looked at my nephews NEW 23 Me account and see no envelope to click to go to messages. Hope they get archived into a PDF like the Health Reports.

  17. I got the email….and although some are looking forward to it I rue the day…..As most people know I have withdrawn my support for 23 as a genetic genealogists tool. If you have 23 results great….if not try Ancestry or FTDNA….23 the past year has been a disgrace to the genetic genealogy community. No stars just black eyes…..

  18. I have matches from UK that have most of the old health reports. I think from other European countries also.

  19. Pingback: 23andMe Reminder – V2 and V3 Customers – June 2 Last Day to Make Changes to Preserve Health Information | DNAeXplained – Genetic Genealogy

  20. Thanks for sharing the information.

    I am an International, Australian. 23andMe will never transitioned my account to the new site, just leave me in the old site until 23andMe pull the plug on it. Anyway the Chinese will eventually make products which will make 23andMe look like kindergarten playground.

    I do not really care but it has stopped me buying anything from the USA. It is like the old adage about buying from local suppliers and not flash in the pan foreigners as the foreigners generally give you inferior products without legal recourse. I have learned a lesson.

  21. 23andme – What a waste……

    I’ve been waiting to transition of the ‘new experience’ for what seems like months. Normally I would not care, except that I have a very interesting new match who shares a specific surname.

    It’s unclear if I can even message this person based on the advisory message indicates that until I am on the new experience certain folks will not receive my messages.

    To make a frustrating situation even worse, there is no customer service or contact info for 23andme on the site. I don’t care to connect via twitter or Facebook.

    I would avoid this site completely had I not already tested there.

  22. I have a considerable investment in 23andMe with 10 relative profiles. I too am frustrated by the complete lack of information on my transition to the ‘new experience’. 23andMe was more than happy to accept my money, the last time only a few months back. What is that prevents them from at the very least giving me some idea of what I’m missing out on, why I’m missing out and when (or whether) it might be fixed?

    Very disappointed,

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