My advice is to visit a store and play around with the different handsets available. And whatever you do, do not ask one of the associates for advice.
My opinion is that the best phone on VZW right now is the Razr Maxx. I understand not digging the Moto UI, but you can always skin it with a custom launcher. Blur is much better than it used to be, but I stick with Go Launcher on my Razr. Honestly, I can say this is the best phone I've ever owned. Wouldn't trade it for anything.
i swear these machines are trying to kill me.