Kindles can read a variety of non-proprietary, non-DRM'ed formats. They read TXT, HTML, JPEG, and non-DRM Mobi files directly.
If you read some of the Kindle discussion groups, you'll see people complaining about "no backlighting", and then a few days/weeks later they will be lauding the fact that it has no backlighting.
The Kindle has many flaws, but it does allow you to read a few different non-DRM formats.
We've known for some time already that Amazon's AZW files are actually Mobi files, but Amazon didn't share Kindle's Mobi PID which would allow one to buy encrypted Mobi books for Kindle.
A revolutionary portable reader that wirelessly downloads books, newspapers, magazines and blogs to a crisp, high-resolution electronic paper display that looks and reads like real paper, even in bright sunlight.