This review presents an overview of the candidates for an improved basal insulin in the pharmaceutical pipeline. The first new basal insulin to enter the market is most likely insulin degludec (IDeg), currently reporting in phase 3 of development, from Novo Nordisk (Bagsvaerd, Denmark). IDeg has a longer duration of action than currently available analogs. Phase 2 studies show comparable efficacy and safety outcomes compared with insulin glargine once daily with less hypoglycemia in type 1 diabetes. The final results of phase 3 studies seem to confirm this, also in type 2 diabetes. Biodel (Danbury, CT) has two long-acting basal insulin formulations in the pipeline, both in the preclinical phase of development: BIOD-Adjustable Basal, a modified formulation of insulin glargine, is available in long-, medium-, and short-acting forms and could be mixed, and BIOD-Smart Basal releases insulin proportional to the subcutaneous glucose concentration. Eli Lilly (Indianapolis, IN) is also developing a basal insulin. Phase 2 trials have been completed, but no results are published yet. Clinical trials with the new patch pump from CeQur (Montreux, Switzerland) have recently started in Europe. This patch pump delivers both basal and bolus doses subcutaneously and is intended for people with type 2 diabetes who need multiple daily injection insulin therapy.