Alexa in your ear: Amazon launches wireless earbuds

NEW YORK — Amazon doesn't want you to leave home without Alexa.

The online shopping giant unveiled wireless earbuds at a Seattle event Wednesday, its first major attempt at getting its Alexa voice assistant outside of homes and worn by customers all day long.

The Echo Buds, which cost $130, let users order an Uber ride or find the nearest coffee shop as they stroll down the street. And later this year, Whole Foods shoppers wearing the black buds can ask Alexa what aisle they can find canned tomatoes or other groceries.

Amazon said the earbuds will start shipping in October.

It said some customers will be invited to buy $180 prescription glasses with Alexa built in. And it will also sell a limited number of Alexa-enabled rings.

Werner Goertz, a personal technology analyst at Gartner, said the products are part of Amazon's plan to make its voice-assistant ubiquitous.

"You can have Alexa with you 24/7," he said.