Let me fix that for you...
"Rapid release cadence is absolutely fundamental to what we're doing"
I beg to differ. It has become fundamental for you because of what you're doing. And what Microsoft is currently doing is releasing products over their entire range which their customers would rather avoid best as they can. And it's getting out of hand I think.
This isn't about people disliking certain changes any more, in my opinion Microsoft is alienating themselves from their own customer base, even their own fans, and it's becoming dangerous I think. Visual Studio 2012? Most developers prefer not to upgrade but to stick with 2010 because of the better interface, and given that VS2010 supports .NET 4.0 as well you can also easily it together with modern Windows versions. Of course 2012 becomes a requirement when developing for Windows 8, but who's going to do that? New developers, like myself, will have no choice but to buy this version because 2010 is no longer available, or they need to grab an MSDN subscription. I know some people did just that solely for grabbing 2010 and took the extra's (software licenses) as a bonus. But it was 2010 they were after.
Xbox One anyone? I'm a PS3 user and although I prefer the environment you won't find me trashing the Xbox. In this case there was also no need what so ever, because Microsoft's own Xbox fans were doing that themselves after the news of all the Xbox One tie ins (no second hand games, constant internet connection, etc.). Sure; Microsoft reversed some of those decisions, but the initial act remains. And the damage has been done; because all console users know that if you buy a gaming console then chances are high that its functionality will change over the years.
And what does Microsoft do? Instead of realizing what is going on they're going to release more products over a shorter time period. And I don't think it's hard to guess what their motivations are: more money. They're going to need it if no one is buying their stuff any more.
But honestly: instead of creating more products, why not start with creating better products instead? You know: products which people would actually want to use? Because if even your fans are rallying and openly state that they'll just skip and avoid certain versions, even on your own fora, then something is very wrong here.
Don't go for quantity; try going for quality instead!
I honestly think this is a very dangerous development for Microsoft. Make one product which people don't want and you can calculate the risks involved. Start mass production of that stuff and you may very well head for a big financial impact.
Even so, I do hope I'll be proven wrong. But I have a bad feeling about all this.