I wouldn't necessarily call it "news" to me, but I certainly don't remember it being a highly sought issue from the 2010 discussions either.
If we were to only add 1-3 settings to the droplist for year range, what should they be?
Currently it is +/- 1, 2, 5, 10 years.
How about just adding 20? Or do you think we need to add more? (I actually don't know if this is significantly more taxing on the servers; if it is, as suggested by the other poster, that may be part of the reason we've shied away from having it in the interface.) There's also the issue of whether it is a search strategy worth encouraging others to do by offering. I suspect that people would be inclined to keep the range as tight as possible just so they don't have to cope with too many results, so probably not an issue.
I should also add a disclaimer that I'm not a product manager but a product designer and researcher (not that it necessarily merits a strong distinction). But I hope to be around for a while and I think the next 12-18 months will be good for search on Ancestry.com.