Mac mini - R.I.P?

The Mac mini is one of those products people don't even know about. And yet for the past 5 years it keeps fighting.

The Mac mini has long been the lovably lost scamp of the the Mac family, produced and sold with as seemingly little fanfare as possible. (Quick: where are the minis located in your local Apple store?) No matter: we’ve seen minis used as everything from high-load-bearing servers to HTPCs to just plain old desktop machines. People love the damn thing — it’s one of the smallest and most power-efficient compact PCs available. - The Verge

The Verge review even gave it a 9/10, a rare feat. But the way Phil rushed through the refresh presentation you can't help wondering - does Apple care about this little guy?

I mean sure it's got USB 3.0 now, new Ivy Bridge processors, updated integrated graphics and a few more tweaks, but I mean...

It may be a persons first experience with OS X, it may be a persons first Mac. It may even be some people's first desktop computer. Other's view it as a media centre PC (why not an Apple TV then??). People use it for a lot of things!! The current model doesn't even have a new exterior. And I can tell you, the interior tweaks weren't to hard either. Not even dedicated graphics!

It's almost as if Apple as the mini as a sideline project, but as we know Apple doesn't do projects.

How long will the mini be around for, we ask? Maybe only 1 or 2 more years I say.

The desktop PC is fading, and with Apple's possible transition into OS Xi (know iOS and OS X merged like Windows 8?) the mini wouldn't do well with that sort of change. The iMac would still have potential as you could turn it into a touch desktop.

I know my arguement is weak but please bear with me...

We kind of have to answer the question: is the mini still worth it? It's an amazing little machine but we have to think about it.

What are your thought's on the mini? How long do you think it can last? Do you think Apple want's it to stick around?