This is exactly the sort of thing you'd expect. The handwriting was on the wall earlier this year when Apple didn't refresh its two-socket, rack-mounted server with Intel's latest six-core "Westmere-EP" Xeon 5600 processors — something that was, from an engineering point of view, relatively easy to do.
That's because the Xeon 5600s are socket-compatible with the quad-core Xeon 5500s that were announced in early April 2009, only a few days after Intel pushed out these "Nehalem-EP" server and workstation chips into the gaping maw of the Great Recession and defied it.
The Xeon 5500s offered a huge performance boost for many workloads compared to previous Xeon 5300 and 5400 processors, mainly due to the switch from the frontside bus architecture to the QuickPath Interconnect point-to-point interconnect used with current Xeon servers. The Xeon 5600 rev happened a year later, and most cases, all server makers had to do to refresh their lines was to certify the new chip, add support for fatter 8 GB and 16 GB DDR3 memory sticks as well as low-voltage 8 GB parts, maybe put in a higher-efficiency power supply, and cram in a few more disk drives in a clever way in their 1U, 2U, and 4U rack form factors and tower equivalents.
It is the height of laziness and selfishness that Apple has not long-since done this, and it is a disservice to Xserve customers that Apple is not revving the Xserves with Xeon 5600s, fatter memory, and faster and more capacious disks as it begins winding down the Xserve product line. Apple could also have given customers just a little bit more warning.