Whew, this thread is being beat to death (which is good, mind you, so everyone can air their opinions). IMO, I'd probably have adopted the iRex a while back, but at it's current price I'd rather pick up a second-hand TabletPC and do all it can do plus more. I know Tablet's aren't even a part of this arguement, but given the pricing issue and arguement about capabilities... Since I have only done preliminary research into the device, I can only base this on initial observations of what existing users have posted in open forums regarding battery life is; one thing I do know for certain is my Tablet's battery life is ~5 hours of constant on, while searchs indicated ~7 hours for the iLiad. Of course when it comes down to it, I've used my Reader almost every day and have only had to charge it once (not including the initial charge), and I received it over a month ago. I've left the screen on many times, came back hours later, and noticed no indication of power consumption (since the Reader only uses power on page flips). During this time, I've read several books and about a couple of manga books (~200 pages each). Try that with either of the two previously mentioned devices; not gonna happen.
From a pure book reading perspective, the large screen sells me when reading computer tech PDF's; but on the flip-side, there have been some pretty darn good conversion tools out there that have made PDF's much more viewable. I am absolutely impressed with the size of the screen compared to the Reader's, just wish Sony would have opted for a little larger screen.
While it is cool that you can install "other" apps on the device, I wouldn't use this for such purposes, as that is what my PDA is for and my PDA is much more portable. I can't believe Sony actually put an MP3 player in the Reader, what a waste (plus, it looks like an after-thought).
From the cost perspective, the Reader win hands down; especially if you lock in the $150 credit using a new Sony Card account (not SonyStyle).
Finally, as to DRM... I think it has pretty unanimously been agreed that this is really a non-issue for several reasons: a) it's a choice you make to purchase DRM'd books as opposed to open-content (although this is the only way to purchase books through Connect), b) it's just a matter of time before the DRM is busted (RE: M$'s LIT format & $ony's inability to keep any platform truly locked down; i.e., just look at the PSP, it's a battle they've all but lost), and c) there are several tools you can use to put the content you want on the Reader, even converted to the Reader's native format.
My Final Verdict: I'll stick with the Reader to do what it's made for: reading eBooks, and I'll use my PDA & laptop for what they're for. Sure, it would be nice to have an all-in-one device; we'll see one at some point in time, but until then I'll just bide my time.