Also, Canon must protect from self-cannibalization. They don't want to kill the Rebel series sales when the mirrorless system arrives.
I'm not so sure about this - Canon knows mirrorless and evf is the future, and that the sub-$1000 market will be dominated by these systems in the near future. So rather than fearsome protection of their Rebel line, the clever way to go is to release competitive mirrorless systems no matter what, or someone else will.
At the same moment, old-school dlsrs will move up in the price range, meaning they might ditch the xxxxd line, move the xxxd and xxd up and sacrifice a possible 7d successor for a full frame in the $2000+ price range.
I really don't believe that they will dominate the sub-$1000 market in the near future. While they are rapidly growing in popularity, they are still just a small fraction of digital cameras sold in the sub- $1000 range. Starting this year, sales quantities are being tracked, so we have numbers thru April, but do not have sub $1000 cameras broken out. Those over $1000 are a small fraction of the overall number in any event.
of 382,438,411 Digital Still cameras produced from Jan-Apr 2012, 26,012,161 were mirrorless, or about 6%. This does not seem to be close to dominating the number of cameras produced.
It is interesting to note that huge numbers of them are going to Asia and Japan, many more than the USA and Europe and the rest of the world combined, whereas the big majority of DSLRs and point and shoot cameras go to USA/Europe and countries other than Japan and Asia. That is the main reason why Canon will be making mirrorless, its because of the huge demand for them in Asia, where the number sold is pushing 8% of the total digital camera sales. You can dig out the numbers here.
While I'd like to get rid of that mirror, It would not be at the expense of fast autofocus, lack of a wide angle lens, or optical viewfinder. Canon released a camera back in the 1960's that was 35mm film and had a pellicle mirror. It never caught on. They tried again in the 1990's with the same results. I do not think they will drop a DSLR line unless it stops making money.
I do think that we are going to see a fallout in mirrorless cameras at some future point. There are too many incompatible lines, each with their own propriatary lenses. Micro 4/3 has a advantage there. Thats something to consider, having seen such ventures fail and disappear in the past.
Anyone have lenses for a Pentax 110 SLR?