Same? 2013 & 2016 YAH

I wish we could get in the mind of the product teams at Starbucks.  Why do they release what they do when they do?  Especially when it’s something as random as the three ornaments in the You Are Here (YAH) series.  In 2013 five YAH cities/states were released to much joy and appreciation of all.  The cities/states were Hawaii, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, and Seattle.  They were beautiful and our first glimpse at a miniature of the, at the time, new full-size mug style.

2014 brought us a “riff” on the series with a set of gold YAH, 2015 brought us the Disneyland and DisneyWorld parks YAH.  Again, well loved ornaments.  And then, as noted in previous posts, we had this odd release of 25 YAH from cities and states all over the country.  In addition to the odd timing, released in March; and the odd purchase options, only sold in licensed stores, collectors are mystified as to the re-release of 3 of the original 5.  Why re-release any, but if you must, why not all 5?

In any case we now have a 2016 (bottom stamped 2015, but released in 2016) version of New York, San Francisco, and Seattle.  Many collectors decided not to bother getting them since they were the same.  But are they?  Below are side-by-side pictures showing the differences.  In reality, the differences are only to the degree of being a variation and not a fully new design.  But there are differences to be noted nonetheless.

2013 and 2106 YAH Comparison

It may be the production differences but the placement on the cup is a bit different, most notably the Seattle. Colors of the 2013 version are more saturated as well.

2013 and 2106 YAH Comparison back

2013 again is on the left and this view again highlights the color differences.

2013 and 2106 YAH Comparison side

2013 is on the bottom and here you can definitely see the different location of the image on the mug. New York is only slightly different, San Francisco a bit, but Seattle very noticeable.

2013 and 2106 YAH Comparison bottom

Here are the other distinct differences. The 2013 on the left are Made in China and the 2016 on the right are Made in Thailand. The strings are quite different too. The 2013 are a silk cord and the 2016 is a woven string that is course and kind of inexpensive feeling and looking. IMO