The Wireless Power Consortium (WPC) today announced that its wireless power standard for kitchen appliances will be called Ki (pronounced “key”).

Wireless power in the kitchen would deliver just that, the ability to run appliances like coffee makers and toasters without the use of cords. With the Ki system, power transmitters are hidden under countertops and up to 2.2kW of electricity is delivered when Ki-compatible devices are placed on top of them.

From the WPC press release:

The Ki Cordless Kitchen standard works with any non-metal countertop or table surface, including marble, slate, granite, laminates, wood and many others. Enabled appliances communicate with the transmitter through near-field communication (NFC), a safe, inexpensive and pervasive technology currently used around the world in bankcards, door locks, passports, transport tickets, and more.

For safety, power does not transmit when other objects like keys or phones are placed on top of charging areas. This means that when not in use for powering devices, Ki-enabled countertops can be used for food preparation or eating.

You can see Ki wireless power in action in this Wireless Power Consortium video:

If the name “Ki” looks/sounds familiar, that’s because the WPC had previously developed the Qi wireless standard for charging things like mobile phones. The Qi standard is now part of 4,500 certified products in use today.

The WPC isn’t the only company working on wireless power. Powercast uses radio frequencies to wirelessly charge and power devices over the air.

The WPC said that its Ki-powered cordless kitchen will be on display at its booth at the IFA show in Berlin this week.

If Berlin is too far, you will also be able to see Ki in action next month at the Smart Kitchen Summit.

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