Apple announced good news for owners of new Macs with Intel Core 2 Duo or Xeon inside; nearly all have 802.11n capability in their Wi-Fi chips, except for the 17-inch iMac with 1.83GHz.

However, downloading the software that will activate the 802.11n capability will cost $2.

Why the charge? Apple says that it has to in order to comply with “generally accepted accountin principles for revenue recognition”, as the 802.11n capability counts as a “significant feature enhancement.”

The software will be available on Apple's website; those who buy a new $180 Airport Extreme Base Station will get the software for free.

The 802.11n promises significant bandwidth and range improvement over the current 802.11g standard, and is also backward-compatible with older Wi-Fi standards.

At one point, it was rumoured that Apple would charge up to $5 for the software.