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Photo: Apple

The new MacBook Pros unveiled Monday don't just feature all-new Apple-designed chips, but also bring back a bunch of much beloved features not found in recent years, including a card slot, MagSafe magnetic power cord and physical function keys.

Why it matters: The return of these features addresses shortcomings that were especially nagging on laptops costing $2,000 and up, though they weren't necessarily deal breakers. Plus, it shows that Apple is willing to listen to customers — eventually.

Catch up quick: Apple's new MacBookPros, which will be available next week, come with one of two new Apple chips: The M1 Pro and M1 Max, both of which are designed to offer greater performance than a comparable Intel chip while using less power.

  • The new laptops also include several features found on other recent Apple gear, including mini-LED displays (iPad Pro) and ProMotion variable display rates (iPhone 13).
  • The 14-inch model starts at $1,999 and the 16-inch version at $2,499.

Between the lines: Apple has been willing to experiment with new features like the Touch Bar, a touchscreen strip that replaced the function keys.

  • One hard part of that approach is being able to admit it and reverse course when the experiment fails.
  • The new laptops also reverse a trend toward minimalism that had seen even machines aimed at professionals lacking heavily used expansion ports and other features.

Go deeper: Apple debuts updated AirPods, faster MacBook Pro laptops

Go deeper

Jul 27, 2020 - Technology

Big Tech's power, in 4 numbers

Data: FactSet; Chart: Naema Ahmed/Axios

The four Big Tech CEOs who will testify before Congress Wednesday command global empires with power and wealth that make them more like countries than companies.

By the numbers: Here are four very large stats for Facebook, Apple, Google/Alphabet and Amazon that tell the story of their value, scale and influence.

2 hours ago - Health

Prior coronavirus infections may not protect well against Omicron

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

New data from South Africa suggests the Omicron variant spreads more than twice as quickly as the Delta variant, and that immunity from prior infection doesn't appear to protect a person very well against Omicron variant.

Why it matters: The findings are extremely preliminary, and there are still many open questions about how well vaccines work against the variant. But these initial breadcrumbs of data are helping the world begin to understand what it's up against.

Bryan Walsh, author of Future
3 hours ago - Technology

AI could end foreign-language subtitles

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

AI companies are developing methods to translate and synthesize voices in ads, movies and TV.

Why it matters: The advances in voice synthesis could help fix bad movie dubbing — and they come as international content is becoming increasingly important to studios and streaming platforms as part of the globalization of entertainment.