For as much as people are not big fans of Amazon (I get it, big company, don't like the format, don't like the labor practices to name a few reasons) their customer service is top notch. Kindles are replaced quickly the vast majority of the time. People are offered a less expensive Kindle if their Kindle is out of warranty. Some people have even been offered free Kindles out of warranty (typically, people with multpile Kindles and who buy a ton of books).
I get that it is not the device for everyone and I get wanting to try something new. I suspect the day will come when I do the same thing. I have found my Kindles to be durable and the customer service excellent. I hate the Kindle App on the iPad and wish Amazon would build something decent, collections would be nice to have Amazon.
The reality is that the major e-readers all have pretty much the same features and survive for about the same amount of time. They have all had their issues when a new model is released. Kobo tends to have a bit more more problems with the software than the others but that seems to have been diminished.
Many people, myself included, are attached to a specific brand because it has worked well for us. You should buy a device that works best for you. For me, that is Amazon because my Kindles have worked great and I enjoy Amazon's customer service. For others, that is Sony or Nook or Kobo. (shrugs)
Buy what makes you happy.