The Speculation: Microsoft will launch the next major version of Windows, codenamed "Windows Blue," as soon as spring 2013. The new OS will get at least annual updates over the air so consumers and businesses with Blue always have the latest verison of the OS.
Why it Won't Happen in 2013: If the rumors are true, a company which usually releases operating systems on a three-year cadence will suddenly start selling a new mainstream operating system less than a year after Windows 8 launched. And before Microsoft starts selilng its next OS, it will no doubt go through months of public and developer previews as it has with Windows 7 and 8.
So, for Windows Blue to launch even as late as Q4 of 2013, Microsoft would have to announce a developer preview or public beta at the beginning of the year. With all the controversy surrounding Windows 8, news of another new Windows OS would convince users who were on the fence about upgrading to delay their purchases. Talk about Osborning yourself.