Or they could switch away from expensive laptop processor and implement a design change to handle a bit more power. The timing is right because some of the Haswell desktop processors could fit into the current Mini no problem. Right now you would loose Iris Pro, at least on the stuff I know about. Haswell will blur the lines as far as mobile and desktop chips go.
Apple has far more options for low power machines than ever before. One of the reasons to think that the Mini will get a major overhaul is this fact that there are many options to choose from.
Originally Posted by Winter
For that to happen, Apple would probably put in an i3 processor. Looking at the list I have in front of me that I printed off of the Intel website, the ones I could see that are most feasible are the i3-4000M (2.4 GHz) and i3-4100M (2.6 GHz). They probably wouldn't use the i5-4200M or i5-4300M at $499.
It would be great if they did though.