Hi, realbitcoinclub. Good questions and observations. It has indeed been interesting to see new businesses emerge to cater to this demand, though as you noted, they are currently all trusted solutions.
You asked what might be the implications if the requirements to own a masternode were reduced and gave a hypothetical example of changing from 1,000 to 10 Dash. On its face, one would think we'd surely see a rise in the number of masternodes. But if the percent of the block reward allocated to masternodes for providing services remained at 45%, that'd mean less Dash would go to each masternode owner, which would push things in the other direction.
Also, would the tasks each masternode performed be changed as well? If not, then the cost to host with someone or to spin it up oneself would be even more steep when compared to the current return. And, like everything, there are likely many unintended consequences that even lengthy discourse between us and others couldn't tease out.
I've heard Evan Duffield and Ryan Taylor and others state that the equilibrium that exists provides the network with a solid number of masternodes. So that a ten times increase in the number of masternodes wouldn't necessarily bring significant value to the network.
I personally would love to see a trustless masternode option emerge. It would help increase the decentralization of Dash and the accessibility for those who own Dash to become more involved.
As you likely are aware, there was talk of this a few years ago and a similar question to yours was asked recently on a video posted to Youtube.com/DashCrypto, to which Amanda B. Johnson replied:
"To my knowledge, that particular feature has been dropped from the Dash Core Group's near term roadmap. I will take responsibility for this information being out there but no longer relevant. Years ago when I was publishing DASH: Detailed, I would frequently repeat things on my show that were said by members of the Core Group. At that time, however, they weren't nearly as well-organized as they are now. There were unofficial roadmaps and people making unofficial public statements. Typical pitfalls of a young, rapidly growing organization. So my apologies to you that I repeated something that did not come to pass. For Dash Core Group's part, their official roadmap is available here: https://www.dash.org/roadmap/ And finally, if you are still interested to earn on your Dash, services like Crowdnode.io offer masternode shares with a minimum buy-in of 1 Dash. So that means regular payments, plus the ability to vote on all Dash treasury proposals."