Friday, January 17, 2014

"Ancestry by DNA" Offers New Tests --- But What Good Are They?


Updated from the post earlier today:

Ancestry by DNA is NOT Ancestry.com although this branding is sometimes confused because the more established Ancestry.com sometimes calls itself DNAAncestry. Ancestry by DNA has announced new testing options in an offering to subscribers of Find My Past




The website makes it appear there are three product lines and of course there are: 


DNA Origins
Ancestral Ethnicity


DNA WorldView 
Compare Your Past vs. Present

Lineage Testing 
Ancestral Migration Routes


One seems to be intended to look similar to the autosomal test Ancestry.com has been offering since 2012. It is not by accident that this offering looks like Ancestry.com. Brand confusion seems to be by intent. The 15 customer reviews on Yelp gave Ancestry by DNA a generous 1.5 stars out of 5. 

One wonders why FindMyPast partnered in this deal. Perhaps it is because some kind of mt-DNA and Y-DNA tests would seem to be offered abroad:

Get 50% off a DNA kit today

Lineage testing can determine your Haplogroup which can show you how your ancient ancestors migrated out of Africa and what route they took on their journey to where you call home. Halpogroups are determined by analysing the DNA that is passed down from either your paternal or maternal side and can be traced back over 100,000 years. Your results will provide you with your Haplogroup, map, and guidebook for beginning your journey of self-discovery through DNA.


It is hard to see what the bargain is even at 50% off. Some STRs values are to be provided to males who test; but it is unclear how many. There seem to be two or possibly 3 levels of mtDNA results offered. What one gets at what price is also left open to guess. It is clear that the price for a full mtDNA test may be $199 (US) but does the 50% off apply to this? 

One more shot over our bow is the warning that:
Your certificate is accompanied by a manual, which discusses the interpretation of test results in greater detail. You will also receive a page with an in depth description of your haplogoup. All three are available for download in PDF format. Please note that results will only be available through our website for 1 year.
 
So if you take this test, be sure to download them promptly.

This is a flashy website; but what are we being offered? Check it out and give me your take. What are we being offered and at what price?

Dr D can think of no reason why persons serious about their family history would be benefited by any of these tests. Ancestry.com, FTDNA and 23andMe all offer far more useful information at comparable prices.  


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