Tandem putting disgruntled 670 users in its sights?

Some will know I’m one of those who threw in the towel on the 670G after several months of struggle. In fact I went back to my old Paradigm pump b/c as a strictly manual pump it’s simpler and more robust than the 670, now languishing in its box in my Emergency Backup Supplies drawer. I’m about to upgrade to Dexcom G6, and in light of what I’m hearing about Tandem’s X2, it occurred to me to wonder, if I did want to buy one out of pocket, how much would that cost. So I went to the Tandem site, and lo, this was being publicized:

https://www.tandemdiabetes.com/products/tslim-x2-upgrade-program
If you are currently using a non-Tandem pump for your insulin therapy and are interested in upgrading to the t:slim X2 Insulin Pump with Basal-IQ Technology, you have the option to use a new t:slim X2 Pump for the remainder of your current pump warranty for a one-time payment of $999.

Not a whole lot of “non-Tandem” pumps to choose from these days—hard not to conclude this is targeted directly at people in the exact same situation as me: unhappy 670 users who are stuck with a pump that didn’t, for them, live up to its promises, for another 3-4 years. $1k is not cheap, but I might could swing it. Hmmm…

In any case, it seems to be a pretty clear indication that Tandem is reading the user reviews and seeing a weakness to exploit. I truly don’t intend this as a Medtronic-bashing thread; the 670 has a lot of users who are thrilled with it as well. But as for me, well, yay competition.

3 Likes

@DrBB

That is great that you make mention of this.

The Tandem offer clearly has been extended. It was scheduled to end on Dec 31, 2018 but is now listed as running until March 31, 2019.

The primary target customers are former Animas customers who have been left in the lurch. Many are being pressured to switch to Medtronic when quite possibly the reason they went with Animas in the first place was BECAUSE they did not want a Medtronic pump. (Which was us.)

I would guess that current Medtronic customers are a secondary target.

1 Like

That would do me no good as I’m out of warranty. Imagine if one had 1 years warranty left, spent a grand on the X2 and it goes kaput just after 1 year. That would be a bitter pill to swallow, if it were me.

As far as competition, I wish there were 5 or 6 brands to choose from. Then perhaps they would up their game.

1 Like

@Dave44

Agreed. Because this is a flat rate and is not prorated for the number of months left, it is not a good deal for everybody.

For example if you only had six months left on your warranty, it would potentially make more sense (financially) to wait it out for your warranty to expire at which point hopefully your insurance would cover the cost of a replacement pump.

On the other extreme, if you recently had obtained your pump and had 3-1/2 years left then the same sum of money over a 3-1/2 year period would perhaps be more reasonable. Obviously everybody is in their own situation.

I also agree that competition drives everybody to be better and ends up being beneficial for the end user.

The worst case scenario is a single pump manufacturer. And it doesn’t matter which one. Many benefits are realized from good and fair competition. Right now we have three pump manufacturers in the USA and there are a couple more in the works.

3 Likes

Glad to see the extension, now I’m tempted again! I was having some regrets.

Aw shucks! I have an Animas pump, but it’s out of warranty. And yes, I’ve been pressured to jump to Medtronic. Glad I found this site to see what others are doing. I’m the only T1 in my social circle. I’ll be looking at the competition after reading several Med complaints here.

As my Animas went out of warranty (and occlusions began), I was directed by my doctor to Medtronic, nothing was said about Tandem. Due to Medicare issues, I was having issues getting Medtronic. At that time, the office added a CDE who had worked with Tandem. She told me about the Tandem integration with Dexcom. The rest is history and I didn’t like the way Medtronic was trying to take totally the pump market.

Don’t do it! I was using the Tandem tslim X2 for 6 months and have now, like you, gone back to my old Paradigm. I had been using Medtronic products for 20 years when I moved to a new state and went to a new Endocrinologist. In retrospect, I think he was on the Tandem payroll because he made it seem as though I’d be ridiculous to stay with Medtronic over the shiny, new, state of the art Tandem product. He was clever in that he first put me on the Dexcom G6 as I waited for my Tandem pump. Two weeks with that device and you will never, ever want to go back. It is astounding. However, and he knew this already, the Dexcom is not compatible with the Medtronic line, yet. Thus, I relented and bought the Tandem.
I received top notch customer care in the first 21 days of using Tandem. At the 3 week mark I knew I didn’t like the pump, (for SO many reasons), I called the rep who called my doctor who called his nurse educator. They all worked on me until I agreed to keep the pump and just “try harder” to adjust.
Six months later and innumerable calls to customer service it was deduced that I had a “lemon” of a device and that they’d like me to send it back for a brand new one. I said, “No, thank you, but I will take a partial refund to be applied to my purchase of a new Medtronic.” This request, made official by the recording of my call and by the form completion of my customer care rep, was followed by SILENCE from the company. Weeks later I received a call stating that, as I had been informed, my claim was rejected and they would like to get the faulty pump back so they could process my claim for a new pump. I was never INFORMED of any such thing. NO ONE called me to say my claim had been denied.
I’m selling the new pump to a hacker. I will NEVER use that company again. Run away! They have a lot to learn.
P.S. as soon as Medtronic knew I was using an out of warranty pump they have been calling me weekly to check on the function. I am trying to decide what to do next for therapy. The Paradigm is chugging along and I use the Dexcom to make adjustments to my therapy. It’s working great for me. Until the Paradigm dies, I think I’ll just stick with this.

Choice is good.

If Medtronic works for you then stick with what works.

I recently made the decision (because my 530 was broken) to go with the 670 because tandem didn’t process my pump order quickly enough. When I called MM after weeks of waiting on Tandem, MM had a loaner pump on it’s way to me in less than 2 hours after my call. A few weeks later they got the paperwork finished to get me a Medicare-provided refurb (seems just like new as all their refurbs) 670G. I want no part of the Auto Mode, nor of their infernal sensors. My G5 is happy to alert me to my glucose status, and my pump to provide my insulin. I’m not the type to expect either brand of sensor to be accurate 100% of the time, so that is why I don’t want the automation of pump & sensor, combined.

Welcome to TUD, @JEZ, hope you stick around!

I was keenly interested in Tandem at my last pump change 2yrs ago, just as the 670G was being rolled out, and I too had trouble getting their sales people to return my calls, whereas Mt was all over me, even offering to come to my house to do a demo. Too bad, because I think Tandem is doing some things right, particularly the remote update capability, something that’s absurdly overdue in the industry. Mostly I hear good things about them performance wise, but obviously your experience was very different. That’s when decent tech support is critical, and obviously that’s not what you were getting.

Welcom JEZ! I hope you find us all a fun,knowledgeable and passionate group of people! I know I have!
And the cool thing here, we all have opinions and thoughts about different treatment plans.
The one thing I will say about how things are now vs when I first started pumping, is choice! There are more options out there and I do firmly believe choices make for competition! And the more the pump companies are trying to get better the better it will be for all of us.
I have used 2 companies over my 29 years of pumping and during that time frame had 5 pumps. I would literally run my pump forever and on,y made changes when there was something new? With my first company, there was not much new happening and the pump never really changed over the years. My last change was the first time I got a new pump right after my warranty ended and that was because I wanted the new technology.
I am so very sorry you had such bad luck with this pump! It is a sad state of affairs that we can’t take them for a test drive for a week. And yes it would have to be for at least a week to see the ins and outs.
Hopefully you can find a new pump that will meet your needs. There are so many news ones coming out. I was just told about the Lilly pump that are starting trials in my area.
And I am using an Omnipod currently for the trial I am in right now. I would love to keep trying all these new pumps. Getting to see them in action is pretty sweet.
Again, I love when we can voice our opinion and I love that we have options. The more the merrier!
I am waiting patiently for the iLet pump. Hopefully that trial will start soon!

1 Like