Is Nvidia elbowing out Intel at Apple again? Will the same Nvidia GeForce 9400M chip that caused a small sensationland in the Mac Mini too?
Tom's Hardware is speculating that it's Nvidia's Ion platform that is Mini-bound.
But Nvidia's Ion chipset is tied strictly to Intel's Atom processor. It seems unlikely that Apple would demote the Core 2 Duo-based Mini to the slower Atom chip. Though anything is possible with Apple, it seems more likely that Apple will upgrade the ancient Intel GMA 950 graphics to the GeForce 9400M, sans Atom.
Apple could be planning some ultra-small Mini whose thermals can only handle a low-power chip like the Atom z540 (1.86GHz) or dual-core 330 (1.6GHz). Like I said, anything's possible at Apple, but unless there's a good reason I don't think a "new, slower" Mini hobbled by the Atom makes for happy Apple customers.