B-cell receptor (BCR) inhibitors represent an exciting new treatment modality in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). Currently, ibrutinib monotherapy as well as idelalisib in combination with rituximab are approved by the European Medical Agency for the treatment of all patients with relapsed/refractory CLL and for first-line treatment of patients with deletion 17p or TP53 mutation unsuitable for chemoimmunotherapy. The results of ongoing trials with these and other BCR inhibitors are expected to lay the basis for approval in further indications, but have to be awaited. Above all, BCR inhibitors have shown to be able to fill the gap of urgently needed therapies for the elderly and comorbid CLL patient as well as the CLL patient with deletion 17p. BCR inhibitors might also challenge the role of allogeneic stem cell transplantation in CLL in the future.