One of my feature requests for Android, aside from it not spying on me, is that the O/S be upgradable. When you buy a carrier-configured Android, to the best of my knowledge, you’re buying something that’s never going to get an upgrade. Consumers have to be careful that it even has the most recent Android O/S.
I have to give a plug to Mototola, owned briefly by Google, for their Moto G range which, like the Nexus, is Vanilla Android. The Moto G claims to be the best, affordable smartphone which Ireckon is a decent claim if you look at the specs and the Vanilla proposition. $200 versus something out-of-touch-with-reality for an iPhone