Amazon unveils shopping cart that knows what you’re buying

NEW YORK (AP) — Amazon has a new cure for long lines at supermarkets: a smart shopping cart.

The cart, which Amazon unveiled on Tuesday, uses cameras, sensors and a scale to automatically detect what shoppers drop off. He maintains an account and then charges their Amazon account when they leave the store. No cashier is needed.

It’s Amazon’s latest attempt to shake up the supermarket industry and offer a solution to long queues. The online shopping giant has opened a cashier-less supermarket in Seattle that uses cameras and ceiling sensors to track what shoppers grab and charge them as they leave. Inc. also has about 25 cashierless convenience stores with similar technology.

The cart, called the Amazon Dash Cart, will first appear in a new Los Angeles supermarket that Amazon will open later this year. The store will have cashiers, but Amazon said it wants to give shoppers a way to bypass queues. In the future, it could be used in Amazon’s Whole Foods grocery chain or other stores, if Amazon sells the technology, but there are no plans yet.

Several startups are already making similar smart shopping carts that are being tested in stores, but many require groceries to be scanned before dropping them off.

There is no scanning on the Amazon shopping cart. A screen near the handle lists what’s being charged, and the cart can detect when something is removed and remove it from the bill. And there’s also a way to let the cart know if you need to throw a jacket or purse in the cart so you don’t have to haul it around.

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Peggy P. Gilmore