Post originally started July 20, 2018, but updated September 8, 2018 with my current estimates based on a combination of various sources mixed with my own personal estimates. This isn’t always easy as some DNA companies keep their stats up to date and others only occasionally update them. I also look at what ISOGG mentions about each company’s stats on its Wiki, but their numbers may be out of date by a fair amount since some of those numbers may date back 6 months or longer. These numbers are my best guesses based on what is publicly available from the companies and estimates made by several people who are using projections based on past results as modified by my projections that may be slightly higher or lower than other people’s estimates. I am guesstimating how many tests were sold by the major DNA companies during the End of Summer or Labor Day Sales offered during August and September 2018.
It’s surprising that none of the DNA companies has posted good numbers. What better way to get more customers than to let people know how many have already tested with them. I would hope if enough bloggers and customers encouraged the DNA companies ( hint to 23andMe, AncestryDNA, FTDNA, MyHeritageDNA, and/or LivingDNA) to update their numbers that at least one or more of them would see the value in it.
In the case of FamilyTree DNA (FTDNA) which is somewhat better at reporting in some ways, they could include the number of tests processed for the Geno Project and MyHeritageDNA as those tests could be added to their database either as free limited transfers or paid transfers ($19 regular upgrade with occasional sales as low as $10). Giving those individuals the option to opt in for the free limited transfer when they do the test could do wonders for their numbers. Of the major DNA companies, FTDNA (free limited or paid upgrade), MyHeritageDNA (free, but not accepting 23andMe v5 chips right now) and LivingDNA (free limited with a paid upgrade option coming soon) are offering free or free limited transfers. How soon before Helix or a current or future Helix vendor realizes the potential for marketing a DNA test for genealogy? If nothing else, Helix could offer a free or cheap download of compatible raw data that could be used to transfer to FTDNA, MyHeritageDNA, 23andMe, and LivingDNA. As it stands now, you would have to pay Helix $499 to download your raw data and use something like https://github.com/tkrahn/extract23 to extract a 23andMe (v3 chip) raw data file.
23andMe: over 8 million tests processed although only over 5 million processed has been reported by 23andMe.
AncestryDNA: over 12 million processed, probably closer to 13 million tests processed; although only over 10 million processed has been reported by AncestryDNA.
FamilyTree DNA (FTDNA): around 950,000 (September 2018) and around 850,000 (back in July 2018); not counting the Geno or MyHeritageDNA tests they process, which could easily bring the number as high as 2 to 2.5 million. It also doesn’t include the mtDNA, Y-DNA, and miscellaneous other DNA tests they have processed.
GEDmatch: 1.08 million (September 2018); backlash from those who don’t agree with allowing law enforcement to access the site’s data without a warrant has impacted them as some expected the number to be 200K higher.
Genes for Good: estimated 26,964 who have turned in kits with 79,311 participants.
Geno 1.0/2.0 /2.0 Next: 933,916 total (as of July 20, 2018) with estimated 230,000 of those being 2.0 and 2.0 Next, but those are based on ISOGG’s numbers on https://isogg.org/wiki/Autosomal_DNA_testing_comparison_chart. Those ISOGG numbers are pretty out of date as they have been unchanged for a while and there have been around 100,000 more Geno 2.0 Next kits processed based since ISOGG last updated Geno statistics. The National Geographic (Nat Geo) number I listed above is current as of mid-afternoon July 20, 2018, and is an increase from 932,783 from a week or two earlier. Helix and Nat Geo have been selling Geno 2.0 Next for $69.99 to $99.99 for a while now.
Living DNA: unknown, but with its recent price drop from $159 to $99 and the new partnership with FindMyPast and the free limited transfers, I expect them to see a significant increase in database size. They also offer a free limited transfer, but you don’t get haplogroup or ethnicity results.
MyHeritageDNA: over 1.7 million tests processed, but I expect closer to 2 million with as many sales as they have offered in the last few months.
Some more on FTDNA stats (taken from the company’s website September 8, 2018 and July 17, 2018): https://www.familytreedna.com/why-ftdna.aspx
About The Family Tree DNA Database
Our databases are the most comprehensive in the field of Genetic Genealogy. As of September 8, 2018, the Family Tree DNA database has 993,977 records. Total numbers include transfers from the Genographic Project and resellers in Europe and Middle East. We also have:
- 10,119 Group Projects
- 594,958 unique surnames
- 682,090 Y-DNA records in the database
- 361,305 25-marker records in the database
- 339,778 37-marker records in the database
- 181,528 67-marker records in the database
- 311,887 mtDNA records in the database
- 150,589 FGS records in the database
compared to FTDNA‘s July 17, 2018 statistics:
About The Family Tree DNA Database (July 17, 2018)
Our databases are the most comprehensive in the field of Genetic Genealogy. As of July 17, 2018, the Family Tree DNA database has 983,201 records. Total numbers include transfers from the Genographic Project and resellers in Europe and Middle East. We also have:
- 10,046 Group Projects
- 585,505 unique surnames
- 675,530 Y-DNA records in the database
- 354,938 25-marker records in the database
- 333,422 37-marker records in the database
- 177,414 67-marker records in the database
- 307,671 mtDNA records in the database
- 146,789 FGS records in the database
Looking forward to more stat updates from the different companies.