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Apple used its annual developer conference to debut a fully redesigned desktop computer for professionals. Unlike the cylindrical model it replaces, the new Mac Pro (due out this fall) features a design reminiscent of years past, giving it significantly more expansion options. The power and flexibility come at a price, though, with the computer starting at around $6,000. You can see our hands-off video here. (We weren't allowed to touch it.)

Why it matters: Though they don't represent a large percentage of Apple's computer sales, professional users are among the company's most demanding and loyal customers.

The new Mac supports:

  • Up to 28-core Intel Xeon processors
  • Up to 1.5 terabytes of memory
  • Up to 300 watts of power

The Mac Pro will start at $5,999 for a model with an 8-core Xeon processor, 32GB of memory and a 256-GB solid-state drive.

Flashback: Apple had said back in April 2017 that it would scrap the old design, but said its replacement would take time. It ended up taking even longer than expected.

To go along with the new desktop, Apple introduced a new $4,999 32-inch, 6K display, the first new stand-alone display from Apple, which had been reselling LG monitors in recent years. A stand that lets the monitor rotate from portrait to landscape mode itself costs $999.

Meanwhile: Apple also used its WWDC event in San Jose to show planned updates to iOS, macOS, watchOS and tvOS. You can read more on that here.

Go deeper

California father and son accused of "reckless arson" in Calder Fire

Firefighters at the Caldor Fire along Highway 89 west of Lake Tahoe, California, in September. Photo: Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

California officials said they arrested a father and son Wednesday on suspicion of starting the Caldor Fire, which threatened the Lake Tahoe area as it burned for over two months earlier this year. They deny any wrongdoing.

Why it matters: The wildfire was the 15th-biggest ever recorded in California, razing more than 1,000 structures, forcing thousands to evacuate and injuring five people as it burned across nearly 222,000 acres of land in El Dorado, Amador and Alpine counties.

New Zealand aims to create smoke-free generation with tobacco ban

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern at a December news conference in Auckland, New Zealand. Photo: Phil Walter/Getty Images

New Zealand officials announced Thursday legislative plans to outlaw smoking by making it illegal to sell or supply tobacco products to the next generation as part of a lifetime ban.

Why it matters: "People aged 14 when the law comes into effect will never be able to legally purchase tobacco," Associate Health Minister Ayesha Verrall said in a statement announcing the proposed law, part of the Smokefree 2025 Action Plan.

FDA approves AstraZeneca COVID drug for people with immune problems

Photo: Qilai Shen/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Food and Drug Administration issued an emergency use authorization for an AstraZeneca COVID-19 antibody drug for people with compromised immune systems.

Why it matters: The drug, Evusheld, is the first antibody therapy authorized in the U.S. to prevent coronavirus symptoms before virus exposure.

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