Today, Brenton discusses the upcoming earnings report from Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT). Analysts expect 4% sales growth in this quarter but a 10% earnings drop as both consumers and investors await the key Windows 8. The new operating system, along with its new phone and tablet, could propel Microsoft to double-digit revenue growth in the newly under way fiscal year. For now, the report should simply stay in line with expectations ahead of potential fireworks later on in the year.

Of course, that show will end up being nothing more than sparklers and Roman candles if Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL) has any say. The company is preparing its most important phone launch in history with the iPhone 5 and looking at a game-changing television, and the stakes have never been higher for Apple. If you're looking for how to play Apple in the coming months, The Motley Fool has created a brand new report listing not only the opportunities facing Apple, but also what to look for to know when to sell. The report not only comes with a write-up from one of our top analysts but also includes continuing updates whenever news strikes the company. Click here to get started today!

Brenton Flynn owns no shares of the companies mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple, Intel, and Microsoft. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of NVIDIA, Apple, Intel, and Microsoft, writing puts on NVIDIA, and creating bull call spread positions in Microsoft and Apple. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.