A source familiar with Microsoft’s plans for the future has supposedly tipped the folks at Bloomberg off to the launch schedule for the next Xbox console. Microsoft’s step into the next generation of console gaming will hit retail in time for the holidays during November of 2013.

Quite honestly, I’m not too keen on Bloomberg‘s supposed source. “…according to people familiar with the company’s plans.” No names, no titles, no associations other than familiarity? I’m familiar with Microsoft’s plans, too. I get their press releases. Am I a source?

That point aside, November of 2013 makes sense to me for now. The Xbox 360 is absolutely nearing the end of its lengthy lifecycle, and Microsoft’s history with the console indicates that an announcement could come as late as this May.

Look to the Xbox 360 and its launch for proof. Microsoft announced the Xbox 360 in May of 2005. The console released in November of the same year. Compared to Sony and Nintendo’s strategy of announcing their hardware more than a year before launch, Microsoft could easily adopt another six month window for hype.

This is a rumor, of course. Despite Bloomberg‘s status as a publication, their source is exceptionally far from official.

As such, do you buy November or 2013 as a release window for the next Xbox?

Oh, and I used the Xbox 720 picture specifically because of how much it rattles some of you fine folk. Tickles me every time.

[via Bloomberg]