I also believe that the idea of native hardware running RISC OS is dead. The reason is simple: there is no ARM processor on the market to give RISC OS the speed it needs (the IYO2-planned IOP342 is surely much much faster than the IOP321, but compared to x86 world, it would not really catch up) to compete with x86 world.
The idea of using a ready-made ARM machine and port RISC OS to it is interesting, but in practice of little value - RISC OS lacks most of the software interesting for portable use, and the ARM-powered machines are mostly small PDA types. In the future, I see x86 processors everywhere where RISC OS would make sense - Intel's Atom is IMHO destined to take a large segment of ARMs previous market because it is a lot faster and nearly as power-saving.
So we should (IMHO of course) concentrate on emulation and using x86 hardware/software to provide a stable, fast and cheap "hardware" platform. To make this happen in a sensible way, we really need a fully open-sourced RO5. Go, ROOL!