Intel's underpowered and underappreciated Celeron processor--essentially a 266 MHz Pentium II with no L2 cache--is going to improved sooner than Intel had previously planned. In a rethinking of its Celeron strategy, Intel is now planning to release a 300 MHz Celeron in June, though this version will still ship sans any L2 cache. In late 1998, however, a 333 MHz version will ship with 128K of L2 cache, bringing Celeron out of the performance gutter.

Originally, Intel wasn't planning on releasing a Celeron with L2 cache until 1999, but the company said that unexpected improvements in the product process are making it happen more quickly.

"The 0.25 \[micron process use to create Celeron\] is ramping so well and quickly that we are able to get to volume earlier" Intel spokesperson Luanne Darbonne said