23andMe to Offer Paid Upgrades for Earlier Chipset in the Near Future – Updated June 24, 2019

Updated June 24, 2019 (originally posted August 20, 2018): The upgrade price is $125 – 23andMe V3 – V5 Upgrade Price $125. In my opinion, that’s not a good deal. It’s the same deal they offer those who purchase the v5 chip $99 non-Health test who later want to upgrade to the Health test.

The following is a response to my request for more information on 23andMe’s chip upgrade they are going to be offering people who tested with an earlier chipset.

Hello Customer,

Thank you for contacting the 23andMe Team. Upgrades are unavailable at this time. We are currently working on an upgrade policy for our customers and would encourage you to wait for this policy to be finalized. The upgrade policy will allow you to be genotyped on our most up-to-date chip at a discounted rate. More information about upgrades will be available in the coming months.

Please let me know if you have any additional questions.

Best regards,

The 23andMe Team

The above was a response to my request about the update:

I tested with v3 chip 5 years ago. In an e-mail today, it was mentioned 23andMe was looking at doing an upgrade for those on older chipsets. What I would like to see personally would be for 23andMe to offer a relatively inexpensive upgrade that took the SNP differences between v3 and v5 and only look at the v5 SNPs that weren’t part of the v3 chipset. I can’t find how many SNPs are on v5 that aren’t on v3, but I don’t want to lose the extra SNPs I have that are on v3 and aren’t on v5.

If 23andMe makes it too expensive to do the upgrade for a v3 to v5, I would forgo the upgrade or simply wait for a major sale where I can get v5 (or whatever chipset is available come Black Friday/Cyber Monday.

Another option to consider would be for those who have done v3 and v5 a way to allow them to merge them into a super-chipset which has all of the SNPs from both chipsets into a new modified v5.1 chipset.


My request was in response to an e-mail where they indicated the following about a chip upgrade option:

If you have an archive of older versions of 23andMe health reports, you will notice that your results may look different than the reports in your archive. This does not indicate that your genetic results changed, but that the presentation of results is different. A more detailed explanation of related changes is available through a notification posted directly within your account.

As we continue to update the product experience, we also wanted to inform you that you may not be eligible for new reports in the future because your sample was processed on an earlier version of our genotyping chip. We are actively working on a chip upgrade policy and hope to have it available in the coming months.

As I indicated in my e-mail to 23andMe’s Customer Support, if the upgrade price was reasonable, I would go that route. However, I also let them know if they make it the price too high, I would look at other options. I didn’t mention it, but I consider how much the company wants me to pay vs. how much I am getting for the upgrade. Using an ebook example, I will pay more for a print copy of a book when the ebook is overpriced. Something many writers and publishers don’t get is pricing of ebooks. It doesn’t cost anywhere near the same amount to sell customers an ebook as it does to sell them a print copy of the same book. There are variable costs that don’t apply to ebooks: cost of printing the ebook, shipping the ebook to your home, etc. Yet, many writers and most publishers want you to pay almost as much for an ebook as you do for print version of the same book. Case in point, I looked at an ebook earlier today and they wanted $37.27 for the ebook version and $39.23 for the hardback version of the same book; it’s 1,455 pages long. Amazon offers a used version for $35.17. If I ever buy a copy of this book, it will be a hardback copy as the ebook is way overpriced. I did this many years ago when another publisher overpriced its ebook compared to its paperback version of the book. After a few years, the publisher lowered the price to a more reasonable level and I ordered the ebook version.

I hoped 23andMe would give me a general ballpark for the upgrade price. If it’s more than what I believe it’s worth, I will wait until a great sale occurs for the latest chip (be it v5, v6, v7, etc.) even if it means waiting several years to purchase a new kit. Since they didn’t give me an expected price point, I am not hopeful the upgrade price will be reasonable.

About Wichita Genealogist

Originally from Gulfport, Mississippi. Live in Wichita, Kansas now. I suffer Bipolar I, ultra-ultra rapid cycling, mixed episodes. Blog on a variety of topics - genealogy, DNA, mental health, among others. Let's collaborateDealspotr.com
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5 Responses to 23andMe to Offer Paid Upgrades for Earlier Chipset in the Near Future – Updated June 24, 2019

  1. Pingback: 23andMe Added Several New Health Reports for Earlier Chipset Users | Ups and Downs of Family History V2.0

  2. Pingback: 23andMe Updates | Ups and Downs of Family History V2.0

  3. Billy Ratchet says:

    Thank you so much for writing about this. I, too, am awaiting an update on a chip upgrade policy. It will be a shame if they do not offer the upgrade at a reasonable price point.

    Liked by 1 person

    • ICT Graver says:

      I hope they make it reasonable, but I will wait to see if they go the smart way of offering it at a good price, like FamilyTree DNA’s $19 upgrade for transfers, or if they go with a small to medium discount. Living DNA is planning on an upgrade discount for those who transfer there, but no word on how much they plan on charging. The 23andMe forums appear to be down as I tried numerous times over the last 12 hours to connect and was unable. Tried two different Wi-Fi connections in case one of the connections was having problems.

      I am not seeing anything on ISOGG’s Facebook group that indicates what the expected price point will be for 23andMe or Living DNA.

      If you haven’t transferred to MyHeritageDNA yet, do it soon as they are making major changes to free transfers on December 1, 2018, but if you upload before then, you won’t be affected by the changes.


  4. Pingback: 23andMe V3 – V5 Upgrade Price $125 | Ups and Downs of Family History V2.0

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