Rumours that Apple's next generation operating system; Leopard won't be launching until October are overblown according to one Wall Street analyst, who according to says checks indicated the software is rapidly approaching completion.

In a report distributed to clients on Monday, American Technology Research analyst Shaw Wu downplayed a recent rumour which speculated that Apple may push the release out to October in order to increase support for dual-booting Microsoft's Windows Vista.

"From our analysis, we believe these concerns are overdone and believe that Mac OS X Leopard will ship on time in the 'Spring' timeframe, or Apple's June quarter", he wrote. "Our sources indicate that Apple's latest beta build has made noticeable improvements in stability and functionality from previous builds and that Apple is likely one or two upcoming builds away from reaching 'final candidate' stage to be released for manufacturing."

In his note to clients on Monday, Wu reiterated a Buy rating on shares of the Cupertino-based Mac maker, emphasising his belief that the company is morphing into a four-prong (Mac, iPod + iTunes, Apple TV, and iPhone) vertically integrated consumer electronics firm.

Earlier this month, Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster told clients that he expects the new OS to ship in mid-April.