A Look Forward: A Letter from 23andMe’s Anne Wojcicki

Each and every one of you — our 23andMe customers — is a pioneer who has helped define the field of personal genetics and has made 23andMe a unique and special place.  I want to thank all of you for being customers.

We’ve been exploring DNA and taking a journey of self discovery together. And while it’s our DNA that makes each of us unique as individuals, it’s you – the 23andMe community — that makes our service and the experience we offer so amazing.  We hope to have a life-long partnership with you as the field of genetics evolves and new discoveries are made.

We’ve come a long way together. When our service first launched, we only provided 14 reports for a whopping $999.  Today, just five years later, we provide more than 200 reports plus genetic ancestry information for just $99 with a monthly subscription fee of $9.  23andMe first introduced subscription pricing in late 2010. Our hope was that lowering the upfront investment would make our service accessible to more people.  Over the past year we’ve continuously experimented with a variety of pricing models while adding new tools and reports. The good news is that 23andMe has seen its customer base grow by more than 100% over the past year.

Now that we better understand subscriptions for both our customers and our business we are making additional adjustments to our Personal Genome Service®. For the first time, we are making changes to our Personal Genome Service® that are not additive, but rather clarify that the initial commitment covers genotyping while the ongoing subscription covers DNA analysis and interpretation along with access to our proprietary tools and technologies.  We recognize that for some customers these changes modify their understanding of what is included in the Personal Genome Service®. We’ll be evaluating various ways to address these concerns in the coming weeks.

We know that some of you have concerns about how these new changes specifically impact the Relative Finder experience.  We are listening.  We have taken your input and will continue to look for your feedback as we improve and evolve our services in 2012.  This will be a learning process as we gather data for the first time about how ending subscriptions impact the experience we provide to our customers. As a business, we are trying to balance optimizing the experience for all of our customers with respecting the privacy of individuals who choose to opt out of our Personal Genome Service®.  We are also focused on providing the best genetic ancestry tools available and will be making improvements in the coming year.

23andMe brings the stories in your DNA to life. Our Personal Genome Service® keeps you on top of the latest genetic research and its implications for you. We recently shared stories about discoveries that customers say have saved lives and helped reunite families along with highlights of our work in 2011. We look forward to continuing to help you discover and share your own stories in the coming year.

If you have questions about the recent changes to our Personal Genome Service® please refer to the FAQ or email your questions to help@23andMe.com.

Thank you for being a part of the 23andMe Community.


  • Maureen Markov

    …..words cannot describe…only action…..on both parts here!

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