This is my new phone: a Motorola Moto G (2nd generation). My two-and-a-half-year-old Galaxy S3 finally died after a few resets and so I decided that it was time. The Moto G is not the latest and greatest in terms of technology, but it is decent, comes with the latest version of Android, and is only $179 total, off-contract.
One thing I have learned is that I do not have to load every app under the sun to have a great experience. After resetting the S3, I had to reinstall apps and each time I reset it, I would install less and less, until I was down to the bare essentials. I realized which apps I actually used and now my phone is pretty uncluttered. Also contributing to the streamlined phone is that it runs stock Android, not some manufacturer skin. So it’s nice and fast. That speed is a great feeling! (and no monthly payments is also wonderful)