Coming from the Incredible, I wanted a similarly sized phone with similar specs. I've had this phone for a few days, and so far I really like it. I also don't understand why it's being marketed as an Android phone "for beginners" or "easy to use" (read: dumbed down). The only thing that affects ease of use would be the form factor and the interface, neither of which are "dumbed down."
The screen size is perfect for what I want, and the form factor is quite beautiful. The camera takes good, clear shots, even though the MP is less than the Incredible. Plus, it has a front-facing camera, which is a huge plus. According to the Verizon rep at the store, it has the 2nd best battery life of the 4G phones (second to the Razr Maxx, of course), though I'm not sure if that tests out to be true. Regardless, it does have a better battery life than my Incredible.
Using it is snappy and responsive. Even if it doesn't have the cutting edge hardware, it's a fantastic phone for the price, especially considering the small screen (which I count as a good thing). I hate the huge phones out there. I want something that fits in one hand or in my pocket.
I can use it throughout the day for calls/texts, moderate browsing/app use and GPS directions. I don't game and I don't do heavy streaming. I keep my data turned on, don't really use WiFi and manually set the brightness of the screen. I can easily last the day on one charge, although when I'm using the GPS in my car, I plug it into my car charger.
2.3 definitely has some nice updates to the interface, and there are a lot of new features that I really appreciate. Being able to manage & organize apps, customize the launcher and have shortcuts on the lock screen out of the box is aweeesome.
The ONLY gripe I have so far with this phone is its inability to install apps to an external SD card (note: moving your apps to "internal memory" is just moving it to a 4gb partition of the 8gb that's included with the phone, and also note that this phone doesn't come with an SD card). I've pretty much exhausted all my non-root options, but I'm going to root in a couple days and see where that takes me. Not being able to move my apps to an external SD card might be a deal breaker, but we'll see.