there are a couple of niches for namecoin and I think sooner or later it (or something very similar) will take off from one.
What niches are you thinking of? Is there really no way existing solutions could fill those niches?
I assume you are aware of the possible use cases we are pondering... http://bitcoinx.com/namecoin/n/
namecoin offers a bunch of solutions, I have a feeling there must be an application for it.