Customer Reviews: 23andMe Personal Genome Service: DNA Test for Health and Ancestry Information
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on November 7, 2013
Many of the results are dependent on you being European. If you're Asian, there is almost never a study relevant to your genotype. I have a hard time believing that there are actually no relevant studies, rather it's the fault of the database.* I'm not interested in improving 23andMe's data when they provide me so little in return. Thanks for telling me I'm 99.9% East Asian and 0.1% Asian. Like I didn't already know. Plus they have no samples of certain Asian people groups, these samples are not based on existing customers so there is no excuse why 23andMe doesn't have data on these countries.

*There are many studies for East Asian populations and they are even in English.
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on February 26, 2015
I bought 4 kits: for my husband, myself, my son and my daughter. Both my children came back as 47% Italian, which simply wasn't possible. 23andme automatically corrected my son's 47% Italian to 0% Italian, but my daughter is still showing as 47% Italian, even though we have pointed out the error and even though my son's report had been automatically corrected.

You can't trust the results, so don't pay for this.
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on April 6, 2014
the testing - the health section. However, I was able to download raw data for me and family before the restriction in Dec. 2013.
I've had some auto-immune problems showing up late in late life and the report has helped me monitor my health better. I don't think the FDA is protecting anyone from this test, I've been more harmed by doctors not interpreting blood tests correctly in private practice than taking this simple and inexpensive spit test. My nutritionist recommended 23andme so she could help identify methylation and detox issues, through third party sites that you can upload your raw files to for free called

The ancestory part was a big surprise and the only part that presently exists. Relatives I haven't seen in 45 years showed up in the friends and family section. Found a couple of genes from parts of the world I would never suspect I had in me or my family, from over 500 years ago in the ancestory composition section. 23andme offers personalized ancestory information in forms of short reports, graphs, and charts. There is a lot of DNA composition revealed, which you can compare with others in your family. A test like this could be helpful for adoptees looking for clues into there origins. You can upload your ancestory files to for more chromosone details for free. I am not a scientist, and the overall experience is fine with me because of it's simplicity. It's a segway to more advance knowledge if you are interested in genealogy. You can also build a family tree that could be a useful piece of information for future generations.

I took away a two stars because the support is below average, the reporting time is very slow, and the health reports are gone.

They are working with the FDA for approval before bringing back the health reports (if ever). They are looking for African American samples presently and suspect they will expand on both African and Asian populations in the future. I wish them the best, I think the founder has good intentions. Science takes time to evolve and they will be considered one of the first companies to bring genome testing to the mass market.
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on July 20, 2014
My husband was adopted at birth and decided to turn to DNA testing. He chose 23 and me based on both cost and the DNA predictors on being potentially predisposed to certain health problems. Since he was adopted at birth and had no info on the birth family, he also wanted to know a bit about his ancestry as he is caucasian, but has darker reddish skin and black hair. On the review...results were fairly slow coming in and they don't (or didn't) have a customer service line. The ancestry info wasn't all that informative as he's 97% of unknown european ancestry on his paternal side. All of that didn't matter when he had a second and third cousin match though. Thier blog type interface and private messaging enabled him to quickly contact his matches and within a couple months he'd met his birth mother. Within another few months he'd met his three bio half siblings. My husband's experience was likely one in a million, but I would encourage adoptee who are seeking information on their ancestry or wanting a DNA based profile of being potentially predisposed to certain health condiitons to consider this service.
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on July 15, 2010
Everyone should try this!!

This seems to be the best DNA service out there. It has at least as many features as other consumer DNA services and presents the info in a VERY user-friendly way. Plus, they add new features all the time.

On the health side, it gives you info about:
- your genetic predisposition and carrier status (or lack of) for diseases,
- how well your body will likely respond to certain drug treatments, and
- your probable genetic traits.

On the ancestry side, it gives you info about:
- your ancestor's geographic regions,
- (if you opt-in and your family joins) you can compare DNA with relatives to see which lines you got which traits from,
- (if you opt-in) you can also find (and, if you like, contact) close or distant relatives. It's awesome for those trying to find out more about their genealogy.

I found the ancestry stuff totally fascinating and the health stuff very useful. WORTH EVERY PENNY.
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on March 7, 2013
I received a 23andMe DNA testing kit as a combined Christmas-Birthday-Retirement Gift last December from my son. The instructions that described sample preparation and mailing were clear. After about 8 weeks, I was notified by e-mail that the results of the test were available at the 23andMe web site.

The ancestry results were fun to review and they were essentially correct. The physical traits were, for the most part correct. The health results were encouraging, as no disease markers were revealed. The disease risk results are useful and I plan to share that information with my physician.

The 23andMe Genetic test is well worth the money. The product will become even more useful as more people are tested. It is the beginning of a new era in medical technology.
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on November 13, 2013
There is absolutely no customer service and their website is atrocious! I have tried multiple times to discuss an issue regarding testing my extremely ill, elderly father and have had no response. The wrong kits have been sent. If everything works out correctly, this may be a good service, but one little glitch and you are out of luck.
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on January 4, 2016
I paid $199.00 for this study and I got it today. Jan. 04, 2016. My belief in DNA is now greatly changed. They got more than 50% of it wrong and the other 50% of diseases I would have known at birth or shortly after. Totally redundant.
I'm 75 yrs. old and I have red, curly hair, very fair skin, roseaca (sp?) , and freckles. I'm also life long lactose intolerant. They got all those wrong. I'm not sure if this is a joke or a mistake and read somebodies, not mine. A complete waste of hard earned money. They got one thing right which is self evident....I have blue eyes and my family is from Ireland. Good guess.
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on July 28, 2013
I purchased my kit directly from 23andMe after keeping tabs on the service for two years and waiting for the price to go down. That said, I thoroughly researched the service, knew what I was buying and had realistic expectations. I also didn't have to contact customer service so I can't comment on that aspect of the company.

I think it was well worth what I spent. Just knowing the likelihood of negative drug reactions is, in my case, a potential life saver. The new findings reports are something I pay close attention to as well. You never know what they are working on that might have information pertinent to you.

Having my raw data has allowed me to look further into a genetic condition that runs in my family but isn't something that 23andMe specifically tests for yet. I had a 50/50 chance of inheriting something I didn't want. Now I know I lost that particular genetic lottery. Environmental and lifestyle factors may still keep the disease from manifesting but, armed with the knowledge that it is a real possibility, I can keep a close eye out for symptoms and not make the mistake of writing them off to normal aging.

Some people would not want to know, but I did. I can now undergo regular testing which will allow me to start treatment at the earliest detectable stage of the disease, should it manifest. My doctor tells me that the standard treatment is to first take a "wait and see" approach but, in my case, he won't be doing that. He's delighted to have the knowledge he needs to treat me more effectively, should the need arise.

The genealogy aspect of the testing is certainly interesting but it isn't something I have a huge interest in so I can't comment on its usefulness. I have had several requests from people who are possibly 4th or 5th cousins who would like to discuss our possible relationships but they don't contact me directly as 23andMe keeps contact info private until you approve its release.

Take what you will from the negative ratings. Every individual has to weigh their fears against their desire for information. Sometimes the price of a thing isn't measured in money. If you go into it with your eyes open I don't think you'll be disappointed. Hopefully you'll be boringly normal. Believe me, that's a wonderful thing. If you are then you should be very happy.

Personally, I highly recommend the service.
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on January 27, 2014
Dealing with 23andme has been a nightmare for me and many others. There is no way to call them. Their customer service phone number says They are experiencing wait times longer than 31 minutes, go to their website for help and information...and then disconnects the call. There is no pressing zero, no connecting to another service, no way to get a person. Then, when you finally find the link to send a question online (which they re-arranged so it is hidden), you are told to wait 6+ business days for a response. This then comes as a canned response that does not answer your question- and the endless process repeats.

The wait times have gotten longer and longer. To avoid saying they are getting longer, 23andme changes the deffinitions. When I entere step 4, it said processing times were 1-3 weeks. The, 23andme changed this to say processing times from the time a sample is RECEIVED by the lab (which was almost a month after USPS delivered it in my case) is 6-8 weeks, while claiming there was no change in overall processing times- people were just confusing the 1-3 weeks, thinking it meant 'the whole process', after way more than 3 weeks at step 4...still no results (step 5). So, there was a change in processing times but they chose to misrepresent this to the customer.

They are totally non-transparent and infuriating to everyone who deals with them. They could explain what is happening with their company- why there are sudden extreme hold-ups, huge discrepancies in kit processing times (you have been waiting 2 months along with everyone else on their 'waiting threads' and someone comes in and has their data in 1 week) and never any explanation. It reminds me of being a student (although 23andme is much worse!) where you pay tuition and in some sense are the customer, but the University or school has somewhat of a superiority complex- you can't complain too much about anything. Maybe more similar to being a low-level employee at a large company (although even that is better, hmmm). I guess the only thing close to comperable is some extreme nightmare of government beurocracy.

Basically, I can't say enough bad things about this company and hate to even give them 1 star. And I went into this so supportive of 23andme and their mission.

And this is a company that holds what is perhaps some of your most personal biological information (along with health history, browsing data, whatever else their cookies track...they are backed by Google). If they treat their customers/research participants this poorly, than I can't imagine they have a culture of respecting customer/participant data and making reasonable, legal and ethical decisions when it comes it sharing it. Also, if they cannot get their basic order processing/ analysis flow under control, I question their ability to handle sensitive data and give accurate analysis. They blame their partner lab NGI, but they seem excellent. 23andme is the problem.

What does 23andme give you that ancestory or FTDNA does not? Nothing. You can use the raw data from any service to get your health information for free (and free of FDA) through Prometheus. All 23andme has is ancestory, which from what I hear, they are WAY behind the other websites.

Their corporate culture shows clearly in customer interactions with them and it is not a corporate culture I feel comfortable having any sensitive information with. We will see, if they change my mind, I will update this review, but I am not holding my breath.
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