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Hundreds of millions of people have quit smoking in the past quarter century, but there are still a billion people smoking daily around the world, a new study in the Lancet shows.

Expand chart

Data: The Lancet , GBD 2015 Tobacco Collaborators; Map: Lazaro Gamio / Axios

Why it matters: One in 10 deaths worldwide is now caused by smoking — half of them in just four countries (China, India, Russia and the U.S.) — and smoking-related deaths have gone up nearly 5 percent in the past 25 years as more smokers are now found in under-developed countries where healthcare delivery is limited. Despite serious efforts by the global public health community to stigmatize and delegitimize cigarette smoking over the past three decades, smoking continues to be a leading cause of death and disability around the world.

The good news: Smoking prevalence globally has fallen by nearly one-third since 1990. One in 12 women smoked then compared to one in 20 today, and smoking rates among American teenagers have plummeted in the past 20 years from a high of 36 percent in 1995 (at the advent of the Tobacco Wars) to nearly single digits today.

Go deeper

Tech's war for your wrist

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Tech's biggest companies are ramping up competition for the real estate between your hand and your elbow.

The big picture: The next big hardware platform after the smartphone will likely involve devices for your eyes, your ears and your wrists.

1 hour ago - World

Tokyo Olympics to allow up to 10,000 fans at each event

Tokyo 2020 president Seiko Hashimoto (L) and IOC President Thomas Bach on Monday. Photo: Rodrigo Reyes Marin/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Organizers of the Tokyo Olympics said Monday that venues can be filled up to 50% capacity when the Games kick off on July 23, with a maximum of 10,000 Japanese spectators at each event, AP reports.

Why it matters: Medical experts advising the Japanese government had recommended against allowing fans, citing the low vaccination rates in Japan and the potential for new variants to drive up infections.

1 hour ago - Health

The psychology behind COVID-19 vaccine lotteries

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

NBA season tickets. Scholarships. A chance at $5 million. The list of lotteries and raffles states are launching to drive up COVID-19 vaccination rates is growing, and some local officials are already reporting "encouraging" results.

Driving the news: The reason why, some psychologists and public health experts say, is that the allure of lotteries for many people is simply that the prospect of winning a great prize seems better than passing up the chance, regardless of the odds.