In an uncharacteristic display of candor, Blizzard CEO and co-founder Mike Morhaime confirmed during a conference call that the much-anticipated Wrath of the Lich King expansion will be released between October to December of this year. Shacknews quotes Morhaime saying, "we have said that it will be coming out this year," referring to earlier speculation stemming from a Vivendi press release. "I can tell you it's not coming in the July to September quarter," Morhaime states, and mentions that Beta testing "is going very well".
The confirmation of any release date is uncommon practice for Blizzard, whose common response to such questions is "when it's ready." Apparently, Blizzard is confident that Wrath of the Lich King will be ready within the year. From the polish that can be seen in the current Beta, this doesn't seem far from the truth. In the same conference call, Morhaime also discussed competing MMOs, the status of ongoing development (that is to say, very little information), and how World of Warcraft has been refined as a game over the past four years.