I am someone who is willing to sacrifice hardware features for high performance software and stock Android on my Nexus 4 is an embodiment of that philosophy.
So why do I say the Nexus 4 is still the best way to experience Android? Because of its simplicity.
I agree 100%. TouchWiz and Sense 5 can be confusing at times and are just too bloated, which impacts the overall user experience of the phone, especially speed. The S4 reportedly suffers from this issue in particular. Plus, I just do not agree with their design choices, which is my own opinion and should not be taken as a sweeping generalization.
Moreover, recent moves by Samsung and HTC to bring the “Nexus Experience" to the Galaxy S4 and One respectively have validated Google’s take on Android even more. It will now be supported by even better hardware since Nexus devices have historically been slightly behind the other flagship phones of their respective generation. It’s great to see Google somewhat taking back Android, particularly from Samsung.